IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/jhecon/v66y2019icp18-26.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Minimum unit prices for alcohol

Author

Listed:
  • Calcott, Paul

Abstract

Minimum unit prices (MUPs) have been proposed on the grounds that they can reduce alcohol consumption of the heaviest drinkers, without significantly burdening moderate drinkers. This paper examines the case for MUPs in an optimal tax framework. Such a policy can improve welfare when two conditions are both satisfied. First, beverage quality and quantity should be substitutes. Second, there should be more distortion to consumption of cheaper alcohol than to more expensive varieties. The consequences of a MUP for the optimal corrective tax are explored with a calibrated numerical example. This example illustrates how the optimal tax rate might be higher when used in isolation, than when a MUP is also being used.

Suggested Citation

  • Calcott, Paul, 2019. "Minimum unit prices for alcohol," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 18-26.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:66:y:2019:i:c:p:18-26
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2019.04.007
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167629618300201
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Anurag Sharma & Fabrice Etilé & Kompal Sinha, 2016. "The Effect of Introducing a Minimum Price on the Distribution of Alcohol Purchase: A Counterfactual Analysis," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(9), pages 1182-1200, September.
    2. Alan Brennan & Petra Meier & Robin Purshouse & Rachid Rafia & Yang Meng & Daniel Hill‐Macmanus & Colin Angus & John Holmes, 2015. "The Sheffield Alcohol Policy Model – A Mathematical Description," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(10), pages 1368-1388, October.
    3. Henry Saffer & Frank Chaloupka, 1994. "Alcohol Tax Equalization and Social Costs," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 33-43, Winter.
    4. Gibson, John & Kim, Bonggeun, 2013. "Quality, Quantity, and Nutritional Impacts of Rice Price Changes in Vietnam," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 329-340.
    5. Griffith, Rachel & O’Connell, Martin & Smith, Kate, 2019. "Tax design in the alcohol market," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 172(C), pages 20-35.
    6. Nelson, Jon P., 2014. "Estimating the price elasticity of beer: Meta-analysis of data with heterogeneity, dependence, and publication bias," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 180-187.
    7. B. Douglas Bernheim & Antonio Rangel, 2004. "Addiction and Cue-Triggered Decision Processes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1558-1590, December.
    8. Peter A. Diamond, 1973. "Consumption Externalities and Imperfect Corrective Pricing," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 4(2), pages 526-538, Autumn.
    9. T Nesbit, 2007. "Excise Taxation and Product Quality: The Gasoline Market," Economic Issues Journal Articles, Economic Issues, vol. 12(2), pages 1-14, September.
    10. Jan De Loecker & Paul T. Scott, 2016. "Estimating market power Evidence from the US Brewing Industry," NBER Working Papers 22957, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Kenkel, Donald S, 1996. "New Estimates of the Optimal Tax on Alcohol," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(2), pages 296-319, April.
    12. Vidar Christiansen & Stephen Smith, 2012. "Externality-Correcting Taxes and Regulation," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 114(2), pages 358-383, June.
    13. Thomas Aronsson & Tomas Sjögren, 2010. "An Optimal-Tax Approach to Alcohol Policy," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 66(2), pages 153-169, June.
    14. Sobel, Russell S & Garrett, Thomas A, 1997. "Taxation and Product Quality: New Evidence from Generic Cigarettes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(4), pages 880-887, August.
    15. Parry Ian W. H. & West Sarah E & Laxminarayan Ramanan, 2009. "Fiscal and Externality Rationales for Alcohol Policies," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 9(1), pages 1-48, July.
    16. Ruhm, Christopher J. & Jones, Alison Snow & McGeary, Kerry Anne & Kerr, William C. & Terza, Joseph V. & Greenfield, Thomas K. & Pandian, Ravi S., 2012. "What U.S. data should be used to measure the price elasticity of demand for alcohol?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 851-862.
    17. Qiujie Zheng & H. Holly Wang, 2017. "Market Power in the Chinese Wine Industry," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 33(1), pages 30-42, January.
    18. Gruber, Jonathan & Koszegi, Botond, 2004. "Tax incidence when individuals are time-inconsistent: the case of cigarette excise taxes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 1959-1987, August.
    19. Pogue, Thomas F & Sgontz, Larry G, 1989. "Taxing to Control Social Costs: The Case of Alcohol," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 235-243, March.
    20. Stockwell, T. & Zhao, J. & Giesbrecht, N. & Macdonald, S. & Thomas, G. & Wettlaufer, A., 2012. "The raising of minimum alcohol prices in Saskatchewan, Canada: Impacts on consumption and implications for public health," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 102(12), pages 103-110.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Gehrsitz, Markus & Saffer, Henry & Grossman, Michael, 2020. "The Effect of Changes in Alcohol Tax Differentials on Alcohol Consumption," IZA Discussion Papers 13198, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Corrective taxes; Minimum unit price; Alcohol;

    JEL classification:

    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:66:y:2019:i:c:p:18-26. 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: (Haili He). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505560 .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.