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The Effect of Energy Price Shocks on Household Food Security

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  • Beatty, Timothy K.M.
  • Tuttle, Charlotte

Abstract

This paper examines how price shocks of energy resources including gasoline, natural gas, electricity and heating degree days affect three indicators of food insufficiency at a household level. Using the Current Population Survey-Food Security Supplement combined with energy price data from the Energy Information Administration and weather information from the Na- tional Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, we find that positive price shocks in gas and natural gas increase the probability of food insecurity and food stress while negative price shocks of heating fuels decrease the probability each indicator of food stress. The most important ef- fects occurred with negative heating fuel price shocks in the low income and cold state-residing low income subgroups. We also consider the effectiveness of federal assistance programs in cush- ioning households from price or weather shocks. We find that heating and food assistance are most effective in low income households that reside in cold states.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in its series 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington with number 124791.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea12:124791

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Keywords: Consumer/Household Economics; Food Security and Poverty; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy;

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  1. Gicheva, Dora & Hastings, Justine & Villas-Boas, Sofia B, 2008. "Revisiting the Income Effect: Gasoline Prices and Grocery Purchases," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt7087m1p6, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
  2. Neil Bania & Laura Leete, 2009. "Monthly household income volatility in the U.S., 1991/92 vs. 2002/03," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 29(3), pages 2100-2112.
  3. Dora Gicheva & Justine Hastings & Sofia Villas-Boas, 2010. "Investigating Income Effects in Scanner Data: Do Gasoline Prices Affect Grocery Purchases?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(2), pages 480-84, May.
  4. Timothy K.M. Beatty & Laura Blow & Thomas Crossley, 2011. "Is there a "heat or eat" trade-off in the UK?," IFS Working Papers W11/09, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  5. Jayanta Bhattacharya & Thomas DeLeire & Steven Haider & Janet Currie, 2002. "Heat or Eat? Cold Weather Shocks and Nutrition in Poor American Families," NBER Working Papers 9004, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Thomas F. Crossley & Yuqian Lu, 2004. "Exploring the Returns-to-Scale in Food Preparation," Department of Economics Working Papers 2004-06, McMaster University.
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