Austrian-style gasoline price regulation: How it may backfire
AbstractIn January 2011, a price regulation was established in the Austrian gasoline market which prohibits firms from raising their prices more than once per day. Similar restrictions have been discussed in New York State and Germany. Despite their intuitive appeal, this article argues that Austrian-type policies may actually harm consumers. In a two-period duopoly model with consumer search, I show that in face of the regulation, firms will distort their prices intertemporally in such a way that their aggregate expected profit remains unchanged. This implies that, as some consumers find it optimal to delay their purchase due to expected price savings, but find it inconvenient to do so, a friction is introduced that decreases net consumer surplus in the market.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 42529.
Date of creation: 08 Nov 2012
Date of revision:
Price Regulation; Consumer Search; Price Dispersion; Intertemporal Search; Regulation; Austria;
Other versions of this item:
- Obradovits, Martin, 2014. "Austrian-style gasoline price regulation: How it may backfire," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 33-45.
- L5 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy
- L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
- D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search, Learning, and Information
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-11-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-ENE-2012-11-24 (Energy Economics)
- NEP-IND-2012-11-24 (Industrial Organization)
- NEP-MKT-2012-11-24 (Marketing)
- NEP-REG-2012-11-24 (Regulation)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Fershtman, Chaim & Fishman, Arthur, 1992.
"Price Cycles and Booms: Dynamic Search Equilibrium,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1221-33, December.
- Fershtman, C. & Fishman, A., 1989. "Price Cycles And Booms: Dynamic Search Equilibrium," Papers 1-89, Tel Aviv.
- Fershtman, C. & Fishman, A., 1989. "Price Cycles and Booms : Dynamic Search Equilibrium," Discussion Paper 1989-22, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
- Fershtman, C. & Fishman, A., 1989. "Price Cycles And Booms Dynamic Search Equilibrium," Papers 8922, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
- Anderson, S.P. & Renault, R., 1997.
"Pricing, Product Diversity and Search Costs: A Bertrand-Chamberlin-Diamond Model,"
97.481, Toulouse - GREMAQ.
- Simon P. Anderson & Regis Renault, 1999. "Pricing, Product Diversity, and Search Costs: A Bertrand-Chamberlin-Diamond Model," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 30(4), pages 719-735, Winter.
- Simon P. Anderson & Regis Renault, 1999. "Pricing, product diversity, and search costs: a Bertrand-Chamberlin-Diamond model," Virginia Economics Online Papers 335, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
- Mark Armstrong & John Vickers & Jidong Zhou, 2009.
"Consumer Protection and the Incentive to Become Informed,"
Journal of the European Economic Association,
MIT Press, vol. 7(2-3), pages 399-410, 04-05.
- Armstrong, Mark & Vickers, John & Zhou, Jidong, 2008. "Consumer protection and the incentive to become informed," MPRA Paper 9898, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Stahl, Dale O, II, 1989. "Oligopolistic Pricing with Sequential Consumer Search," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 700-712, September.
- Fershtman, C. & Fishman, A., 1991.
"The "Perverse" Effects of Wage and Price Controls in Search Markets,"
11-91, Tel Aviv.
- Fershtman, Chaim & Fishman, Arthur, 1994. "The 'perverse' effects of wage and price controls in search markets," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 1099-1112, May.
- Dewenter, Ralf & Heimeshoff, Ulrich, 2012. "Less pain at the pump? The effects of regulatory interventions in retail gasoline markets," DICE Discussion Papers 51, Heinrich‐Heine‐Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
- Noel, Michael D., 2012. "Edgeworth Price Cycles and intertemporal price discrimination," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 942-954.
- Haucap, Justus & Müller, Hans Christian, 2012. "The Effects of Gasoline Price Regulations: Experimental Evidence," DICE Discussion Papers 47, Heinrich‐Heine‐Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
- Arteaga, Julio Cesar & Flores, Daniel, 2010. "Regulation, competition and fraud: evidence from retail gas stations in Mexico," MPRA Paper 34187, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Burdett, Kenneth & Judd, Kenneth L, 1983. "Equilibrium Price Dispersion," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(4), pages 955-69, July.
- Rauh, Michael T., 2004. "Wage and price controls in the equilibrium sequential search model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(6), pages 1287-1300, December.
Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.