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The Economics of Global Consumption Patterns


  • Clements, Kenneth W.
  • Qiang, Ye


Henri Theil devoted a good deal of the last two decades of his professional activities to the analysis of international consumption patterns. This paper commences with a review of Theil’s path-breaking research on cross-country demand, and then investigates in some detail two important issues: (i) the extent to which differences in incomes and prices explain international consumption pattern; and (ii) new empirical evidence regarding the extent to which tastes are similar internationally. The paper also contains an evaluation of another important building block of Theil’s work in this area, that of the assumption of preference independence, whereby there are no interactions between goods in the utility function.

Suggested Citation

  • Clements, Kenneth W. & Qiang, Ye, 2003. "The Economics of Global Consumption Patterns," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 35.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:joaaec:43272

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Laitinen, Kenneth, 1978. "Why is demand homogeneity so often rejected?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 1(3), pages 187-191.
    2. William A. Barnett, 1979. "Theoretical Foundations for the Rotterdam Model," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 46(1), pages 109-130.
    3. K.W. Clements & D. Chen, 1994. "Fundamental Similarities in Consumer Behaviour," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 94-03, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    4. Clements, Kenneth W & Selvanathan, Antony & Selvanathan, Saroja, 1996. "Applied Demand Analysis: A Survey," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 72(216), pages 63-81, March.
    5. Seale, James & Regmi, Anita & Bernstein, Jason, 2003. "International Evidence on Food Consumption Patterns," Technical Bulletins 184321, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    6. E. A. Selvanathan, 1991. "Further Results on Aggregation of Differential Demand Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(4), pages 799-805.
    7. Selvanathan, Saroja, 1987. "A Monte Carlo test of preference independence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 259-261.
    8. Mountain, Dean C, 1988. "The Rotterdam Model: An Approximation in Variable Space," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 477-484, March.
    9. Bewley, Ronald, 2000. "Mr Henri Theil:: an interview with the International Journal of Forecasting," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 1-16.
    10. C. E. V. Leser, 1941. "Family Budget Data and Price-Elasticities of Demand," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(1), pages 40-57.
    11. Meisner, James F., 1979. "The sad fate of the asymptotic Slutsky symmetry test for large systems," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 231-233.
    12. Chung, Ching-Fan & Lopez, Elena, 1988. "A regional analysis of food consumption in Spain," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 209-213.
    13. Izan, Haji Y. & Clements, Kenneth W., 1979. "A cross-cross-section analysis of consumption patterns," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 83-86.
    14. Stigler, George J & Becker, Gary S, 1977. "De Gustibus Non Est Disputandum," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(2), pages 76-90, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lars-H. R. Siemers, 2014. "A General Microsimulation Model for the EU VAT with a specific Application to Germany," International Journal of Microsimulation, International Microsimulation Association, vol. 7(2), pages 40-93.
    2. Bohman, Helena & Nilsson, Désirée, 2006. "Income Inequality as a Determinant of Trade Flows," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 73, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.
    3. Qi, Li & Prime, Penelope B., 2009. "Market reforms and consumption puzzles in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 388-401, September.
    4. Verma, Monika & Hertel, Thomas W. & Preckel, Paul V., 2011. "Predicting within country household food expenditure variation using international cross-section estimates," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 113(3), pages 218-220.


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