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New Products, Quality Changes and Welfare Measures Computed From Estimated Demand Systems

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  • Aviv Nevo

Abstract

This paper examines the construction of a price index based on an estimated demand system. In principle the method examined can produce a price index that accounts for introduction of new products and quality changes in existing products. However, I isolate two key assumptions that have to be made in order to interpret the demand estimates into welfare measures. Using estimates of a brand-level demand system for ready-to-eat cereal I demonstrate the empirical importance of the assumptions. For the data I use, depending on the interpretation of the demand estimates, a price index can range between a 35% percent increase over the five years examined to a 2.4% decrease.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 8425.

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Date of creation: Aug 2001
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:8425

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  1. Aviv Nevo, 1998. "Measuring Market Power in the Ready-to-Eat Cereal Industry," NBER Working Papers 6387, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-90, July.
  3. Mas-Colell, Andreu & Whinston, Michael D. & Green, Jerry R., 1995. "Microeconomic Theory," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195102680.
  4. Aviv Nevo, 2000. "A Practitioner's Guide to Estimation of Random-Coefficients Logit Models of Demand," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(4), pages 513-548, December.
  5. Jerry A. Hausman, 1994. "Valuation of New Goods under Perfect and Imperfect Competition," NBER Working Papers 4970, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Pakes, Ariel & Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James A, 1993. "Applications and Limitations of Some Recent Advances in Empirical Industrial Organization: Price Indexes and the Analysis of Environmental Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 241-46, May.
  7. Daniel McFadden, 1996. "Computing Willingness-to-Pay in Random Utility Models," Working Papers _011, University of California at Berkeley, Econometrics Laboratory Software Archive.
  8. Trajtenberg, Manuel, 1989. "The Welfare Analysis of Product Innovations, with an Application to Computed Tomography Scanners," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(2), pages 444-79, April.
  9. Jerry A. Hausman, 1997. "Valuing the Effect of Regulation on New Services in Telecommunications," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(1997 Micr), pages 1-54.
  10. Gordon, Robert J & Griliches, Zvi, 1997. "Quality Change and New Products," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 84-88, May.
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