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(Q,S,s) Pricing Rules

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  • Kenneth Burdett

    ()
    (Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania)

  • Guido Menzio

    ()
    (Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and NBER)

Abstract

We study the effect of menu costs on the pricing behavior of sellers and on the cross-sectional distribution of prices in the search-theoretic model of imperfect competition of Burdett and Judd (1983). We find that, when menu costs are small, the equilibrium is such that sellers follow a (Q, S, s) pricing rule. According to a (Q, S, s) rule, a seller lets inflation erode the real value of its nominal price until it reaches some point s. Then, the seller pays the menu cost and changes its nominal price so that the real value of the new price is randomly drawn from a distribution with support [S,Q], where Q is the buyer’s reservation price and S is some price between s and Q. Only when the menu cost is relatively large, the equilibrium is such that sellers follow a standard (S; s) pricing rule. We argue that whether sellers follow a (Q, S, s) or an (S, s) rule matters for the estimation of menu costs and seller-specific shocks.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania in its series PIER Working Paper Archive with number 13-024.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: 29 May 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pen:papers:13-024

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Keywords: Search frictions; Menu costs; Sticky prices;

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  1. Caplin, Andrew & Leahy, John, 1991. "State-Dependent Pricing and the Dynamics of Money and Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(3), pages 683-708, August.
  2. Han Hong & Matthew Shum, 2006. "Using price distributions to estimate search costs," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(2), pages 257-275, 06.
  3. Peter J. Klenow & Oleksiy Kryvtsov, 2005. "State-Dependent or Time-Dependent Pricing: Does it Matter for Recent U.S. Inflation?," NBER Working Papers 11043, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Moraga-González, José Luis & Wildenbeest, Matthijs R., 2008. "Maximum likelihood estimation of search costs," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(5), pages 820-848, July.
  5. Benabou, Roland, 1988. "Search, Price Setting and Inflation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(3), pages 353-76, July.
  6. Allen Head & Lucy Qian Liu & Guido Menzio & Randall Wright, 2012. "Sticky Prices: A New Monetarist Approach," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 10(5), pages 939-973, October.
  7. Lucas, Robert E, Jr & Stokey, Nancy L, 1987. "Money and Interest in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 491-513, May.
  8. Michael Dotsey & Robert G. King & Alexander L. Wolman, 1999. "State-Dependent Pricing And The General Equilibrium Dynamics Of Money And Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 655-690, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Pablo D. Fajgelbaum, 2013. "Labor Market Frictions, Firm Growth, and International Trade," NBER Working Papers 19492, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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