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Demand and Distance: Evidence on Cross-Border Shopping

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  • Asplund, Björn Marcus
  • Friberg, Richard
  • Wilander, Fredrik

Abstract

While many studies have documented deviations from the Law of One Price in international settings, evidence is scarce on the extent to which consumers take advantage of price differentials and engage in cross border shopping. We use data from 287 Swedish municipalities to estimate how responsive alcohol sales are to foreign prices, and relate the sensitivity to the location’s distance to the border. Typical results suggest that the elasticity with respect to the foreign price is around 0.4 in the border region; moving 200 (400) kilometres inland reduces it to 0.2 (0.1). Given that cross-country price differences for alcohol and other products are often caused by taxes, our evidence has implications for the debate on tax competition/harmonization.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4983.

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Date of creation: Apr 2005
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4983

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Keywords: cross border shopping; european integration; law of one price; tax competition; tax harmonization;

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References

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  1. Engel, C. & Rogers, J.H., 1995. "How Wide is the Border?," Papers 4-95-16, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
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  7. Asplund, Björn Marcus & Friberg, Richard & Wilander, Fredrik, 2005. "Demand and Distance: Evidence on Cross-Border Shopping," CEPR Discussion Papers 4983, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Ravi Kanbur & Michael Keen, 1991. "Jeux Sans Frontieres: Tax Competition and Tax Coordination when Countries Differ in Size," Working Papers 819, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Leonzio Rizzo, 2010. "Interaction between federal taxation and horizontal tax competition: theory and evidence from Canada," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(1), pages 369-387, July.
  2. Beatty, Timothy K.M. & Larsen, Erling Røed & Sommervoll, Dag Einar, 2009. "Driven to drink: Sin taxes near a border," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 1175-1184, December.
  3. Thomas Y. Mathä & Alessandro Porpiglia & Michael Ziegelmeyer, 2014. "Cross-border commuting and consuming: An empirical investigation," BCL working papers 89, Central Bank of Luxembourg.
  4. Sebastian Kessing & Bernhard Koldert, 2013. "Cross-border shopping and the Atkinson–Stiglitz theorem," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 20(4), pages 618-630, August.
  5. Rizzo, Leonzio, 2006. "Local government responsiveness to federal transfers: theory and evidence," MPRA Paper 5373, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Johansson, Per & Pekkarinen, Tuomas & Verho, Jouko, 2012. "Cross-border health and productivity effects of alcohol policies," Working Paper Series 2012:10, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  7. Eyal Dvir & Georg H. Strasser, 2013. "Does Marketing Widen Borders? Cross-Country Price Dispersion in the European Car Market," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 831, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 04 Apr 2014.
  8. Adams, Scott & Cotti, Chad, 2008. "Drunk driving after the passage of smoking bans in bars," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(5-6), pages 1288-1305, June.
  9. Geys, Benny & Osterloh, Steffen, 2012. "Borders as boundaries to fiscal policy interactions? An empirical analysis of politicians' opinions on rivals in the competition for firms," Discussion Papers, Research Professorship & Project "The Future of Fiscal Federalism" SP II 2012-113, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  10. Brian G. Knight & Nathan Schiff, 2010. "Spatial Competition and Cross-border Shopping: Evidence from State Lotteries," NBER Working Papers 15713, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Asplund, Marcus & Friberg, Richard & Wilander, Fredrik, 2007. "Demand and distance: Evidence on cross-border shopping," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 141-157, February.
  12. Nordblom, Katarina, 2006. "The Complex Attitudes to Alcohol Taxation," Working Papers in Economics 207, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  13. Aiura, Hiroshi & Ogawa, Hikaru, 2013. "Unit tax versus ad valorem tax: A tax competition model with cross-border shopping," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 30-38.
  14. Cotti, Chad D. & Walker, Douglas M., 2010. "The impact of casinos on fatal alcohol-related traffic accidents in the United States," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 788-796, December.
  15. Thomas Y. Mathä & Alessandro Porpiglia & Michael Ziegelmeyer, 2014. "Wealth differences across borders and the effect of real estate price dynamics: Evidence from two household surveys," BCL working papers 90, Central Bank of Luxembourg.
  16. Leal, Andrés & López-Laborda, Julio & Rodrigo, Fernando, 2009. "Prices, taxes and automotive fuel cross-border shopping," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 225-234.
  17. Andrés Leal & Julio López-Laborda & Fernando Rodrigo, 2010. "Cross-Border Shopping: A Survey," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 135-148, May.

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