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State-dependent pricing under infrequent information: a unified framework

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Author Info

  • Marco Bonomo
  • Carlos Carvalho
  • René Garcia

Abstract

We characterize optimal state-dependent pricing rules under various forms of infrequent information. In all models, infrequent price changes arise from the existence of a lump-sum "menu cost." We entertain various alternatives for the source and nature of infrequent information. In two benchmark cases with continuously available information, optimal pricing rules are purely state-dependent. In contrast, in all environments with infrequent information, optimal pricing rules are both time- and state-dependent, characterized by "trigger strategies" that depend on the time elapsed since the last date when information was fully factored into the pricing decision. After considering the case in which information arrives infrequently for exogenous reasons, we address pricing problems in which gathering and processing information also entails a lump-sum cost. When the information and adjustment costs must be incurred simultaneously, the optimal pricing policy is a fixed-price time-dependent rule. When the costs are dissociated, the optimal rule features price stickiness and inattentiveness. Finally, we consider versions of the price-setting problems in which firms continuously entertain partial information. We characterize the optimal pricing rules and provide numerical solution algorithms and examples in a unified framework.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of New York in its series Staff Reports with number 455.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:455

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Related research

Keywords: Pricing ; Information theory ; Macroeconomics ; Price levels;

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Cited by:
  1. Chauveau, Th. & Subbotin, A., 2013. "Price dynamics in a market with heterogeneous investment horizons and boundedly rational traders," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 1040-1065.
  2. Etienne Gagnon & David López-Salido & Nicolas Vincent, 2012. "Individual Price Adjustment along the Extensive Margin," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2012, Volume 27, pages 235-281 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Fernando E. Alvarez & Francesco Lippi & Luigi Paciello, 2010. "Optimal price setting with observation and menu costs," NBER Working Papers 15852, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Alvarez, Fernando E & Lippi, Francesco & Paciello, Luigi, 2012. "Monetary Shocks in a Model with Inattentive Producers," CEPR Discussion Papers 9228, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Cavallo, Alberto & Rigobon, Roberto, 2011. "The Distribution of the Size of Price Changes," Working Papers 2011-011, Banco Central de Reserva del Perú.
  6. francesco lippi & Luigi Paciello & Fernando Alvarez, 2012. "Monetary Shocks with Observation and Menu Costs," 2012 Meeting Papers 439, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  7. Schenkelberg, Heike, 2011. "Why are Prices Sticky? Evidence from Business Survey Data," Discussion Papers in Economics 12158, University of Munich, Department of Economics.

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