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Pricing Behavior and the Introduction of the Euro: Evidence from a Panel of Restaurants in Italy

  • Eugenio Gaiotti


    (Bank of Italy, Research Department)

  • Francesco Lippi

    (European Central Bank and Deutsche Bundesbank)

We assemble a panel of 2,500 restaurants in Italy over the period 1998-2004 to study whether, and through which channels, the introduction of euro coins and banknotes had an impact on individual pricing behaviour. We reach three conclusions. Firstly, while the evidence rejects the hypothesis that the changeover led to a “doubling of prices” in this industry, the event may have focussed public attention on the cumulative price increases which took place before the changeover, reflecting costs and demand. Secondly, the rise in the average meal price was due more to a larger proportion of restaurants revising their prices than to large individual revisions. Lastly, more local market power (as proxied by a concentration index) was associated with a larger price increase; an interpretation of the latter finding is proposed which also explains why the effects of the cash changeover were stronger in less competitive industries.

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Article provided by GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University in its journal Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia.

Volume (Year): 63 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3-4 (December)
Pages: 491-526

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Handle: RePEc:gde:journl:gde_v63_n3-4_p491-526
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  1. Fabrizio Adriani & Giancarlo Marini & Pasquale Scaramozzino, 2004. "The Inflationary Consequences Of A Currency Changeover: Evidence From The Michelin Red Guide," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2004 45, Royal Economic Society.
  2. Mark Bils & Peter J. Klenow, 2002. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices," NBER Working Papers 9069, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Michael Dotsey & Robert G. King & Alexander L. Wolman, 1999. "State-Dependent Pricing and the General Equilibrium Dynamics of Money and Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 655-690.
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