IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Rising household diesel consumption in the United States: A cause for concern? Evidence on asymmetric pricing

  • Fosten, Jack

Papers in the literature have thus far overlooked the projected increase in U.S. diesel car share when looking at asymmetries in petroleum pricing. This paper addresses this issue by comparing retail gasoline and diesel prices in order to see whether they rise faster than they fall given the price of their upstream input, crude oil. This phenomenon has been termed in the literature as “Rockets and Feathers.” We apply the threshold vector error correction model (TVECM) of Hansen and Seo (2002) which has not yet been applied in the literature. We account for the 2008 structural break to crude oil and petroleum prices by splitting the sample using evidence from the recent structural break unit root test of Kim and Perron (2009). Both markets seem to price symmetrically before the 2008 break, but we find evidence of asymmetric pricing after 2008 in diesel prices, and not in gasoline prices. Given that the diesel market is small relative to the gasoline market and therefore more open to price exploitation, the ongoing cost increases associated with the policy of switching to Ultra Low Sulphur diesel (ULSD) from 2006 to 2010 could be at the heart of this asymmetry. With this in mind, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission should monitor diesel prices as the market share grows, in order to ensure that consumers are not adversely affected.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S014098831200134X
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Economics.

Volume (Year): 34 (2012)
Issue (Month): 5 ()
Pages: 1514-1522

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:eneeco:v:34:y:2012:i:5:p:1514-1522
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eneco

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Kwiatkowski, Denis & Phillips, Peter C. B. & Schmidt, Peter & Shin, Yongcheol, 1992. "Testing the null hypothesis of stationarity against the alternative of a unit root : How sure are we that economic time series have a unit root?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1-3), pages 159-178.
  2. Bacon, Robert W., 1991. "Rockets and feathers: the asymmetric speed of adjustment of UK retail gasoline prices to cost changes," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 211-218, July.
  3. Hansen, Bruce E. & Seo, Byeongseon, 2002. "Testing for two-regime threshold cointegration in vector error-correction models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 110(2), pages 293-318, October.
  4. Eric Zivot & Donald W.K. Andrews, 1990. "Further Evidence on the Great Crash, the Oil Price Shock, and the Unit Root Hypothesis," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 944, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  5. Perron, Pierre, 1989. "The Great Crash, the Oil Price Shock, and the Unit Root Hypothesis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(6), pages 1361-1401, November.
  6. Kim, Dukpa & Perron, Pierre, 2009. "Unit root tests allowing for a break in the trend function at an unknown time under both the null and alternative hypotheses," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 148(1), pages 1-13, January.
  7. Elliott, Graham & Rothenberg, Thomas J & Stock, James H, 1996. "Efficient Tests for an Autoregressive Unit Root," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 813-36, July.
  8. Johansen, Soren, 1988. "Statistical analysis of cointegration vectors," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 12(2-3), pages 231-254.
  9. Borenstein, Severin & Cameron, A Colin & Gilbert, Richard, 1997. "Do Gasoline Prices Respond Asymmetrically to Crude Oil Price Changes?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 305-39, February.
  10. Douglas, Christopher C., 2010. "Do gasoline prices exhibit asymmetry? Not usually!," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 918-925, July.
  11. Liu, Ming-Hua & Margaritis, Dimitris & Tourani-Rad, Alireza, 2010. "Is there an asymmetry in the response of diesel and petrol prices to crude oil price changes? Evidence from New Zealand," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 926-932, July.
  12. Osterwald-Lenum, Michael, 1992. "A Note with Quantiles of the Asymptotic Distribution of the Maximum Likelihood Cointegration Rank Test Statistics," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 54(3), pages 461-72, August.
  13. Hansen, B.E., 1991. "Inference when a Nuisance Parameter is Not Identified Under the Null Hypothesis," RCER Working Papers 296, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  14. Godby, R. & Stengos, T. & Wandsschneider, B., 1997. "Testing for Asymmetric Pricing in the Canadian Retail Gasoline Market," Working Papers 1997-4, University of Guelph, Department of Economics and Finance.
  15. Lance J. Bachmeier & James M. Griffin, 2003. "New Evidence on Asymmetric Gasoline Price Responses," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 772-776, August.
  16. Ronald Johnson, 2002. "Search Costs, Lags and Prices at the Pump," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 20(1), pages 33-50, February.
  17. Enders, Walter & Siklos, Pierre L, 2001. "Cointegration and Threshold Adjustment," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 19(2), pages 166-76, April.
  18. Chen, Li-Hsueh & Finney, Miles & Lai, Kon S., 2005. "A threshold cointegration analysis of asymmetric price transmission from crude oil to gasoline prices," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 233-239, November.
  19. Engle, Robert F & Granger, Clive W J, 1987. "Co-integration and Error Correction: Representation, Estimation, and Testing," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(2), pages 251-76, March.
  20. Esteve, Vicente & Gil-Pareja, Salvador & Martinez-Serrano, Jose Antonio & Llorca-Vivero, Rafael, 2006. "Threshold cointegration and nonlinear adjustment between goods and services inflation in the United States," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 23(6), pages 1033-1039, December.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:eneeco:v:34:y:2012:i:5:p:1514-1522. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.