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The effects of interest rates and taxes on new car prices

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  • Maura P. Doyle
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    Abstract

    Utilizing the Consumer Expenditure Survey and state-level variation in taxes, this study finds that prices for most models of new cars shift by more than the amount of a sales tax. The evidence of an overshifting of prices offers support for the recent models of tax incidence in imperfectly competitive markets. The results also suggest that changes in the after-tax interest rate have offsetting effects on new car prices; a one percentage point increase in the after-tax real interest rate will prompt, on average, a mark-down of $106.

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    File URL: http://www.federalreserve.gov/pubs/feds/1997/199738/199738abs.html
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    File URL: http://www.federalreserve.gov/pubs/feds/1997/199738/199738pap.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) in its series Finance and Economics Discussion Series with number 1997-38.

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    Date of creation: 1997
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    Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:1997-38

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    Related research

    Keywords: Taxation ; Automobile industry and trade ; Interest rates ; Prices;

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    1. Ben S. Bernanke, 1982. "Adjustment Costs, Durables, and Aggregate Consumption," NBER Working Papers 1038, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Ernst R. Berndt & Ann F. Friedlaender & Judy Shaw-Er Wang Chiang, 1990. "Interdependent Pricing and Markup Behavior: An Empirical Analysis of GM, Ford and Chrysler," NBER Working Papers 3396, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Timothy J. Besley & Harvey S. Rosen, 1998. "Sales Taxes and Prices: An Empirical Analysis," NBER Working Papers 6667, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Daniel Feenberg & Elisabeth Coutts, 1993. "An introduction to the TAXSIM model," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(1), pages 189-194.
    5. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-90, July.
    6. Smith, Richard L, II, 1982. "Franchise Regulation: An Economic Analysis of State Restrictions on Automobile Distribution," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(1), pages 125-57, April.
    7. Sullivan, Daniel, 1985. "Testing Hypotheses about Firm Behavior in the Cigarette Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(3), pages 586-98, June.
    8. Orazio P. Attanasio, 1995. "Consumer Durables and Inertial Behavior: Estimation and Aggregation of (S,s) Rules," NBER Working Papers 5282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Timothy F. Bresnahan & Peter C. Reiss, 1985. "Dealer and Manufacturer Margins," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(2), pages 253-268, Summer.
    10. Mankiw, N Gregory, 1985. "Consumer Durables and the Real Interest Rate," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(3), pages 353-62, August.
    11. Deaton, A. & Ng, S., 1996. "Parametric and Nonparametric Approaches to Price and Tax Reform," Cahiers de recherche 9601, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
    12. Ben S. Bernanke, 1981. "Permanent Income, Liquidity, and Expenditure on Automobiles: Evidence from Panel Data," NBER Working Papers 0756, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Delipalla, Sofia & Keen, Michael, 1992. "The comparison between ad valorem and specific taxation under imperfect competition," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 351-367, December.
    14. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1995. "Product Differentiation and Oligopoly in International Markets: The Case of the U.S. Automobile Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 891-951, July.
    15. Michael L. Katz & Harvey S. Rosen, 1983. "Tax Analysis in an Oligopoly Model," NBER Working Papers 1088, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Feldstein, Martin S & Taylor, Amy, 1976. "The Income Tax and Charitable Contributions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(6), pages 1201-22, November.
    17. Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1982. "Hall's consumption hypothesis and durable goods," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 417-425.
    18. David M. Cutler & Lawrence F. Katz, 1991. "Macroeconomic Performance and the Disadvantaged," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 22(2), pages 1-74.
    19. Besley, Timothy, 1989. "Commodity taxation and imperfect competition : A note on the effects of entry," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3), pages 359-367, December.
    20. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1996. "Dealer Price Discrimination in New Car Purchases: Evidence from the Consumer Expenditure Survey," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(3), pages 622-54, June.
    21. Bresnahan, Timothy F., 1981. "Departures from marginal-cost pricing in the American automobile industry : Estimates for 1977-1978," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 201-227, November.
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    Cited by:
    1. Steve Mccorriston & Ian Sheldon, 2005. "Export Competition and the Remission of Domestic Environmental Taxes," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 12(5), pages 627-637, September.

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