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Imperfect Information and Staggered Price Setting

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  • Ball, Laurence
  • Cecchetti, Stephen G

Abstract

Many Keynesian macroeconomic models are based on the assumption that firms change prices at different times. This paper presents an explanation for this "staggered" price setting. The authors develop a model in which firms have imperfect knowledge of the current state of the economy and gain information by observing the prices set by others. This gives each firm an incentive to set its price shortly after other firms set theirs. Staggering can be the equilibrium outcome. In addition, the information gains can make staggering socially optimal even though it increases aggregate fluctuations. Copyright 1988 by American Economic Association.

Suggested Citation

  • Ball, Laurence & Cecchetti, Stephen G, 1988. "Imperfect Information and Staggered Price Setting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(5), pages 999-1018, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:78:y:1988:i:5:p:999-1018
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Laurence Ball & David Romer, 1989. "Are Prices Too Sticky?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(3), pages 507-524.
    2. Laurence Ball & David Romer, 1989. "The Equilibrium and Optimal Timing of Price Changes," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(2), pages 179-198.
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    Cited by:

    1. Slanicay Martin, 2014. "Some Notes on Historical, Theoretical, and Empirical Background of DSGE Models," Review of Economic Perspectives, De Gruyter Open, vol. 14(2), pages 1-20, June.
    2. Giovanni Olivei & Silvana Tenreyro, 2007. "The Timing of Monetary Policy Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 636-663, June.
    3. Cochrane, John H., 1998. "What do the VARs mean? Measuring the output effects of monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 277-300, April.
    4. Jens-Peter Loy & Christoph Weiss, 2002. "Staggering and synchronisation of prices in a low-inflation environment: Evidence from German food stores," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(4), pages 437-457.
    5. Huang, Kevin X. D. & Liu, Zheng, 2001. "Production chains and general equilibrium aggregate dynamics," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 437-462, October.
    6. Emmanuel Dhyne & Jerzy Konieczny, 2007. "Temporal Distribution of Price Changes: Staggering in the Large and Synchronization in the Small," Working Paper series 01_07, Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis.
    7. Mash, Richard, 2002. "New Keynesian Microfoundations Revisited: A Generalised Calvo-Taylor Model and the Desirability of Inflation vs. Price Level Targeting," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2002 138, Royal Economic Society.
    8. Carlos Borondo, 1994. "La rigidez nominal de los precios de la Nueva Economía Keynesiana: una panorámica," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 18(2), pages 245-288, May.
    9. Lau, Sau-Him Paul, 2001. "Aggregate Pattern of Time-dependent Adjustment Rules, II: Strategic Complementarity and Endogenous Nonsynchronization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 98(2), pages 199-231, June.
    10. Marco Bonomo & René Garcia, 2001. "The macroeconomic effects of infrequent information with adjustment costs," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 34(1), pages 18-35, February.
    11. V. Bhaskar, 2002. "On Endogenously Staggered Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(1), pages 97-116.
    12. Erwan Gautier, 2009. "Les ajustements microéconomiques des prix : une synthèse des modèles théoriques et résultats empiriques," Revue d'économie politique, Dalloz, vol. 119(3), pages 323-372.
    13. Olivei, Giovanni & Tenreyro, Silvana, 2010. "Wage-setting patterns and monetary policy: International evidence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(7), pages 785-802, October.
    14. Hauenschild Nils & Stahlecker Peter, 2004. "Minimax Adjustment Price Setting and Price Rigidities / Preissetzung nach dem Minimax-Anpassungsprinzip und Preisstarrheiten," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 224(1-2), pages 37-50, February.
    15. Seonghwan Oh & Michael Waldman, 1989. "Keynesian Coordination Failure and Persistence," UCLA Economics Working Papers 570, UCLA Department of Economics.
    16. Kevin X. D. Huang & Zheng Liu, 1999. "Chain of Production as a Monetary Propagation Mechanism," Cahiers de recherche CREFE / CREFE Working Papers 106, CREFE, Université du Québec à Montréal.
    17. Pikoulakis, E. V. & Evans, William, 1998. "Staggering, the optimal monetary rule and persistence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 91-95, April.
    18. Stepanyan Ara & Tevosyan Anahit, 2008. "A small open economy model with remittances: Evidence from Armenian economy," EERC Working Paper Series 08/06e, EERC Research Network, Russia and CIS.
    19. Andersen, Torben M., 1998. "Persistency in sticky price models," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 593-603, May.
    20. Emmanuel Dhyne & Jerzy Konieczny, 2014. "Aggregation And The Staggering Of Price Changes," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 52(2), pages 732-756, April.
    21. Kevin X.D. Huang & Jonathan Willis, 2012. "Sectoral Interactions and Monetary Policy Under Costly Price Adjustments," 2012 Meeting Papers 883, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    22. repec:rim:rimwps:01-07 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Hubert Kempf, 1990. "Externalités et contrats salariaux," Économie et Prévision, Programme National Persée, vol. 92(1), pages 51-60.

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