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The Speed of Gasoline Price Response in Markets with and without Edgeworth Cycles

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  • Matthew Lewis

    (Ohio State University)

  • Michael Noel

    (University of California, San Diego)

Abstract

Retail gasoline prices are known to respond fairly slowly to wholesale price changes. This does not appear to be true for markets with Edgeworth price cycles. Recently many retail gasoline markets in the midwestern United States and other countries have been shown to exhibit price cycles in which competition generates rapid cyclical retail price movements. We show that cost changes in cycling markets are passed on two to three times faster than in markets without cycles. We argue that the constant price movement inherent within the Edgeworth cycle eliminates price frictions and allows firms to pass on cost fluctuations more easily. © 2011 The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Suggested Citation

  • Matthew Lewis & Michael Noel, 2011. "The Speed of Gasoline Price Response in Markets with and without Edgeworth Cycles," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(2), pages 672-682, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:93:y:2011:i:2:p:672-682
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    References listed on IDEAS

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