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Revealed preference analysis of characteristics models

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Author Info

  • Laura Blow

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

  • Martin Browning

    (CAM, University of Copenhagen)

  • Ian Crawford

    (University of Surrey and cemmap, Institute for Fiscal Studies)

Abstract

Characteristics models have been found to be useful in many areas of economics. However, their empirical implementation tends to rely heavily on functional form assumptions. In this paper we develop a revealed preference approach to characteristics models. We derive the necessary and sufficient empirical conditions under which data on the market behaviour of heterogeneous, price-taking consumers are nonparametrically consistent with the consumer characteristics model. Where these conditions hold, we show how information may be recovered on individual consumer’s marginal valuations of product attributes. In some cases marginal valuations are point identified and in other cases we can only recover bounds. Where the conditions fail we highlight the role which the introduction of unobserved product attributes can play in rationalising the data. We implement these ideas using consumer panel data on the Danish milk market.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by School of Economics, University of Surrey in its series School of Economics Discussion Papers with number 0305.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:sur:surrec:0305

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Web page: http://www.surrey.ac.uk/economics/
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Keywords: Product characteristics; revealed preference;

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References

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  1. Richard Blundell & Robin, J M, 1995. "Latent separability: grouping goods without weak separability," IFS Working Papers W95/09, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  2. Diewert, W E, 1973. "Afriat and Revealed Preference Theory," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(3), pages 419-25, July.
  3. Varian, Hal R, 1984. "The Nonparametric Approach to Production Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 579-97, May.
  4. Bajari, Patrick & Benkard, C. Lanier, 2004. "Demand Estimation With Heterogeneous Consumers and Unobserved Product Characteristics: A Hedonic Approach," Research Papers 1842, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  5. Varian, Hal R, 1982. "The Nonparametric Approach to Demand Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 945-73, July.
  6. C. Lanier Benkard & Patrick Bajari, 2004. "Demand Estimation with Heterogeneous Consumers and Unobserved Product Characteristics: A Hedonic Approach," NBER Working Papers 10278, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Richard Blundell & Martin Browning & Ian Crawford, 1998. "Nonparametric Engel Curves and Revealed Preference," Discussion Papers 99-07, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  8. Muellbauer, John, 1974. "Household Production Theory, Quality, and the "Hedonic Technique."," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(6), pages 977-94, December.
  9. Ian Crawford, 2006. "Necessary and Sufficient Conditions for Latent Separability," School of Economics Discussion Papers 0706, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
  10. Rosen, Sherwin, 1974. "Hedonic Prices and Implicit Markets: Product Differentiation in Pure Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(1), pages 34-55, Jan.-Feb..
  11. Pudney, Steven E, 1981. "Instrumental Variable Estimation of a Characteristics Model of Demand," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(3), pages 417-33, July.
  12. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-90, July.
  13. Hanoch, Giora & Rothschild, Michael, 1972. "Testing the Assumptions of Production Theory: A Nonparametric Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(2), pages 256-75, March-Apr.
  14. Browning, M J, 1983. "Necessary and Sufficient Conditions for Conditional Cost Functions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(3), pages 851-56, May.
  15. Varian, Hal R, 1983. "Non-Parametric Tests of Consumer Behaviour," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(1), pages 99-110, January.
  16. Heckman, James & Scheinkman, Jose, 1987. "The Importance of Bundling in a Gorman-Lancaster Model of Earnings," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(2), pages 243-55, April.
  17. Varian, Hal R., 1988. "Revealed preference with a subset of goods," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 179-185, October.
  18. Diewert, W. E. & Parkan, C., 1985. "Tests for the consistency of consumer data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1-2), pages 127-147.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Matthew Polisson, 2011. "Goods Versus Characteristics: Dimension Reduction and Revealed Preference," Discussion Papers in Economics 11/44, Department of Economics, University of Leicester, revised Dec 2011.
  2. Subir Bose & Matthew Polisson & Ludovic Renou, 2012. "Ambiguity Revealed," Discussion Papers in Economics 12/07, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
  3. Fabrice Talla Nobibon & Laurens Cherchye & Bram De Rock & Jeroen Sabbe & Frits Spieksma, 2011. "Heuristics for deciding collectively rational consumption behavior," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/131710, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  4. Laurens Cherchye & Bram De Rock & Jeroen Sabbe & Frederic Vemeulen, 2008. "Nonparametric tests of collectively rational consumption behavior: an integer programming procedure," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces0801, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
  5. Laura Andersen & Sinne Smed, 2013. "What is it consumers really want, and how can their preferences be influenced? The case of fat in milk," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 45(1), pages 323-347, August.
  6. Griffith, Rachel & Nesheim, Lars, 2013. "Hedonic methods for baskets of goods," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(2), pages 284-287.
  7. Degan, Arianna & Merlo, Antonio, 2009. "Do voters vote ideologically?," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(5), pages 1868-1894, September.
  8. Teuber, Ramona, 2010. "Estimating the Demand for Sensory Quality – Theoretical Considerations and an Empirical Application to Specialty Coffee," Journal of International Agricultural Trade and Development, Journal of International Agricultural Trade and Development, vol. 59(3).
  9. Tim Beatty & Ian Crawford, 2010. "How demanding is the revealed preference approach to demand," CeMMAP working papers CWP17/10, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  10. Arianna Degan & Antonio Merlo, 2007. "Do Voters Vote Ideologically?, Third Version," PIER Working Paper Archive 08-034, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania, revised 01 Aug 2008.
  11. Griffith, Rachel & Nesheim, Lars, 2008. "Household Willingness to Pay for Organic Products," CEPR Discussion Papers 6905, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Carvajal, Andres & Polemarchakis, H.M., 2008. "Identification of Pareto-improving policies: Information as the real invisible hand," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 167-179, January.
  13. Rachel Griffith & Lars Nesheim, 2010. "Estimating households' willingness to pay," CeMMAP working papers CWP24/10, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.

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