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Price setting in a leading Swiss online supermarket

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Author Info

  • Berka, Martin
  • Devereux, Michael B.
  • Rudolph, Thomas

Abstract

We study a newly released data set of scanner prices for food products in a large Swiss online supermarket. We find that average prices change about every two months, but when we exclude temporary sales, prices are extremely sticky, changing on average once every three years. Non-sale price behavior is broadly consistent with menu cost models of sticky prices. When we focus specifically on the behavior of sale prices, however, we find that the characteristics of price adjustment seems to be substantially at odds with standard theory.

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File URL: http://researcharchive.vuw.ac.nz/handle/10063/1685
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Victoria University of Wellington, School of Economics and Finance in its series Working Paper Series with number 1685.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:vuw:vuwecf:1685

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Alice Fong, Administrator, School of Economics and Finance, Victoria Business School, Victoria University of Wellington, PO Box 600 Wellington, New Zealand
Phone: +64 (4) 463-5353
Fax: +64 (4) 463-5014
Email:
Web page: http://www.victoria.ac.nz/sef
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Keywords: online supermarket; price behavior; sticky price;

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References

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  1. Peter J. Klenow & Oleksiy Kryvtsov, 2005. "State-Dependent or Time-Dependent Pricing: Does It Matter for Recent U.S. Inflation?," Working Papers 05-4, Bank of Canada.
  2. Bernardo Guimaraes & Kevin D. Sheedy, 2008. "Sales and Monetary Policy," CEP Discussion Papers dp0887, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  3. Mikhail Golosov & Robert E. Lucas, 2003. "Menu Costs and Phillips Curves," NBER Working Papers 10187, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Emi Nakamura & Jón Steinsson, 2008. "Five Facts about Prices: A Reevaluation of Menu Cost Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1415-1464, November.
  5. Mark Bils & Peter J. Klenow, 2002. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices," NBER Working Papers 9069, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Mark Gertler & John Leahy, 2006. "A Phillips Curve with an Ss Foundation," NBER Working Papers 11971, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2010. "Product Creation and Destruction: Evidence and Price Implications," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(3), pages 691-723, June.
  8. Judith A. Chevalier & Anil K. Kashyap & Peter E. Rossi, 2003. "Why Don't Prices Rise During Periods of Peak Demand? Evidence from Scanner Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 15-37, March.
  9. Jon Steinsson & Emi Nakamura, 2007. "Monetary Non-Neutrality in a Multi-Sector Menu Cost Model," 2007 Meeting Papers 736, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  10. Martin Eichenbaum & Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2011. "Reference Prices, Costs, and Nominal Rigidities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(1), pages 234-62, February.
  11. Emi Nakamura, 2008. "Pass-Through in Retail and Wholesale," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 430-37, May.
  12. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  13. Eyal Baharad & Benjamin Eden, 2003. "Price Rigidity and Price Dispersion: Evidence from Micro Data," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0321, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  14. Patrick J. Kehoe & Virgiliu Midrigan, 2010. "Prices are Sticky After All," NBER Working Papers 16364, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Judith A. Chevalier & Anil K Kashyap, 2011. "Best Prices," NBER Working Papers 16680, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Diewert, Erwin & Fox, Kevin J. & Ivancic, Lorraine, 2009. "Scanner Data, Time Aggregation and the Construction of Price Indexes," Economics working papers erwin_diewert-2009-48, Vancouver School of Economics, revised 22 Sep 2009.
  17. Sheshinski, Eytan & Weiss, Yoram, 1977. "Inflation and Costs of Price Adjustment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 287-303, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Chakraborty, Ratula & Dobson, Paul & Seaton, Jonathan S. & Waterson, Michael, 2011. "Pricing in inflationary times- the penny drops," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 975, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.

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