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Inflation, price dispersion, and market structure

  • Caglayan, Mustafa
  • Filiztekin, Alpay
  • Rauh, Michael T.

In this paper, we use a novel data set containing prices from bazaars, convenience stores, and supermarkets in Istanbul to re-examine the relationship between price dispersion and inflation. Although existing evidence is mixed, we find positive and significant relationships between dispersion, on the one hand, and lagged dispersion and unexpected product-specific inflation on the other. We also find evidence that dispersion is initially decreasing in anticipated aggregate inflation but is eventually increasing. Finally, average price duration and dispersion are lowest in the bazaar. This is intuitive, since menu and search costs should be minimal in that market structure.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 52 (2008)
Issue (Month): 7 (October)
Pages: 1187-1208

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:52:y:2008:i:7:p:1187-1208
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