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The Effect of Price Advertising on Prices: Evidence in the Wake of 44 Liquormart

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  • Jeffrey Milyo

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  • Joel Waldfogel

Abstract

The 44 Liquormart decision, eliminating Rhode Island's ban on liquor price advertising, made Rhode Island the subject of a natural experiment for measuring the effect of advertising on prices. Using Massachusetts prices as controls, we find that advertising stores substantially cut only prices of the products that they advertise. Prices of other products, at both advertising and nonadvertising stores, do not change. Advertising stores cut their prices on products advertised by rivals, while nonadvertising stores do not. We find no reductions in price dispersion across stores. Newspaper-advertising stores appear to draw a higher share of customers after they advertise.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, Tufts University in its series Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University with number 9807.

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Date of creation: 1998
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Handle: RePEc:tuf:tuftec:9807

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  1. Bagwell, Kyle & Ramey, Garey, 1994. "Advertising and Coordination," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(1), pages 153-72, January.
  2. Salop, Steven & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Bargains and Ripoffs: A Model of Monopolistically Competitive Price Dispersion," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 493-510, October.
  3. Cady, John F, 1976. "An Estimate of the Price Effects of Restrictions on Drug Price Advertising," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 14(4), pages 493-510, December.
  4. Comanor, William S & Wilson, Thomas A, 1979. "The Effect of Advertising on Competition: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 17(2), pages 453-76, June.
  5. Eckard, E Woodrow, Jr, 1991. "Competition and the Cigarette TV Advertising Ban," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 29(1), pages 119-33, January.
  6. Butters, Gerard R, 1977. "Equilibrium Distributions of Sales and Advertising Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 465-91, October.
  7. Nelson, Phillip, 1970. "Information and Consumer Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(2), pages 311-29, March-Apr.
  8. Nelson, Philip, 1974. "Advertising as Information," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(4), pages 729-54, July/Aug..
  9. Feldman, Roger D & Begun, James W, 1980. "Does Advertising of Prices Reduce the Mean and Variance of Prices?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(3), pages 487-92, July.
  10. Grossman, Gene M & Shapiro, Carl, 1984. "Informative Advertising with Differentiated Products," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 63-81, January.
  11. Kwoka, John E, Jr, 1984. "Advertising and the Price and Quality of Optometric Services," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(1), pages 211-16, March.
  12. Lal, Rajiv & Matutes, Carmen, 1994. "Retail Pricing and Advertising Strategies," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 67(3), pages 345-70, July.
  13. George J. Stigler, 1961. "The Economics of Information," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 69, pages 213.
  14. Peters, Michael, 1984. "Restrictions on Price Advertising," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(3), pages 472-85, June.
  15. Grant Devine & Bruce Marion, 1979. "The influence of consumer price information on retail pricing and consumer behavior," Framed Field Experiments 00138, The Field Experiments Website.
  16. Benham, Lee, 1972. "The Effect of Advertising on the Price of Eyeglasses," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(2), pages 337-52, October.
  17. Glazer, Amihai, 1981. "Advertising, Information, and Prices-A Case Study," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 19(4), pages 661-71, October.
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