The Magnitude of Menu Costs: Direct Evidence from Large U.S. Supermarket Chains
AbstractWe use store-level data to document the exact process of changing prices and to directly measure menu costs at five multi-store supermarket chains. We show that changing prices in these establishments is a complex process, requiring dozens of steps and a nontrivial amount of resources. The menu costs average $105,887/year per store, comprising 0.70% of revenues, 35.2% of net margins, and $0.52/price change. These menu costs may be forming a barrier to price changes. Specifically, (1) a supermarket chain facing higher menu costs (due to item pricing laws which require a separate price tag on each item) changes prices 2 1/2 times less frequently than the other four chains; (2) within this chain, the prices of products exempt from the law are changed over three times more frequently than the products subject to the law.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 0505012.
Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 15 May 2005
Date of revision:
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 38
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Web page: http://126.96.36.199
Menu Cost; Posted Prices; Multiproduct Retailer; Price Rigidity; Sticky Prices; Rigid Prices; Cost of Price Adjustment; New Keynesian Economics; Time Dependent Pricing;
Other versions of this item:
- Levy, Daniel, et al, 1997. "The Magnitude of Menu Costs: Direct Evidence from Large U.S. Supermarket Chains," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(3), pages 791-825, August.
- E12 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Keynes; Keynesian; Post-Keynesian
- E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
- E50 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - General
- G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing
- G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
- L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
- L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
- L16 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Industrial Organization and Macroeconomics; Macroeconomic Industrial Structure
- M21 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting - - Business Economics - - - Business Economics
- M31 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Marketing
- Q11 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Aggregate Supply and Demand Analysis; Prices
- Q13 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Markets and Marketing; Cooperatives; Agribusiness
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-05-23 (All new papers)
- NEP-COM-2005-05-23 (Industrial Competition)
- NEP-MAC-2005-05-23 (Macroeconomics)
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