IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/ucp/jpolec/v112y2004i5p947-985.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices

Author

Listed:
  • Mark Bils
  • Peter J. Klenow

Abstract

We examine the frequency of price changes for 350 categories of goods and services covering about 70% of consumer spending, based on unpublished data from the BLS for 1995 to 1997. Compared with previous studies we find much more frequent price changes, with half of prices lasting less than 4.3 months. The frequency of price changes differs dramatically across categories. We exploit this variation to ask how inflation for 'flexible-price goods' (goods with frequent changes in individual prices) differs from inflation for 'sticky-price goods' (those displaying infrequent price changes). Compared to the predictions of popular sticky price models, actual inflation rates are far more volatile and transient, particularly for sticky-price goods. The data appendix for this paper can be found at http://www.nber.org/data-appendix/w9069/
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Mark Bils & Peter J. Klenow, 2004. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 947-985, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:112:y:2004:i:5:p:947-985
    DOI: 10.1086/422559
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/422559
    Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/422559
    Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

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

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Hall, Simon & Walsh, Mark & Yates, Anthony, 2000. "Are UK Companies' Prices Sticky?," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 52(3), pages 425-446, July.
    2. Mark Bils & Peter J. Klenow, 2004. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 947-985, October.
    3. Daniel Aaronson & James M. MacDonald, 2000. "How do retail prices react to minimum wage increases?," Working Paper Series WP-00-20, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    4. Jeff Fuhrer & George Moore, 1995. "Inflation Persistence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(1), pages 127-159.
    5. V. V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2000. "Sticky Price Models of the Business Cycle: Can the Contract Multiplier Solve the Persistence Problem?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1151-1180, September.
    6. Taylor, John B., 1999. "Staggered price and wage setting in macroeconomics," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.),Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 15, pages 1009-1050, Elsevier.
    7. Benigno, Pierpaolo, 2004. "Optimal monetary policy in a currency area," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 293-320, July.
    8. Gali, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1999. "Inflation dynamics: A structural econometric analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 195-222, October.
    9. Anil K Kashyap, 1995. "Sticky Prices: New Evidence from Retail Catalogs," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(1), pages 245-274.
    10. Ohanian, Lee E & Stockman, Alan C & Kilian, Lutz, 1995. "The Effects of Real and Monetary Shocks in a Business Cycle Model with Some Sticky Prices," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(4), pages 1209-1234, November.
    11. Aoki, Kosuke, 2001. "Optimal monetary policy responses to relative-price changes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 55-80, August.
    12. Jonathan L. Willis, 2000. "Estimation of adjustment costs in a model of state-dependent pricing," Research Working Paper RWP 00-07, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, revised 2000.
    13. Elizabeth Caucutt & Mrinal Ghosh & Christina Kelton, 1999. "Durability Versus Concentration as an Explanation for Price Inflexibility," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 14(1), pages 27-50, February.
    14. Levy, Daniel & Bergen, Mark & Dutta, Shantanu & Venable, Robert, 1997. "The Magnitude of Menu Costs: Direct Evidence from Large U.S. Supermarket Chains," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 791-824.
    15. Michael Dotsey & Robert G. King, 2006. "Pricing, Production, and Persistence," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(5), pages 893-928, September.
    16. Christiano, Lawrence J. & Eichenbaum, Martin & Evans, Charles L., 1999. "Monetary policy shocks: What have we learned and to what end?," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.),Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 2, pages 65-148, Elsevier.
    17. Andrew S. Caplin & Daniel F. Spulber, 1987. "Menu Costs and the Neutrality of Money," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(4), pages 703-725.
    18. Carlton, Dennis W., 1989. "The theory and the facts of how markets clear: Is industrial organization valuable for understanding macroeconomics?," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.),Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 15, pages 909-946, Elsevier.
    19. Ben S. Bernanke & Julio J. Rotemberg, 1997. "NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number bern97-1, May.
    20. Eyal Baharad & Benjamin Eden, 2004. "Price Rigidity and Price Dispersion: Evidence from Micro Data," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 7(3), pages 613-641, July.
    21. Sbordone, Argia M., 2002. "Prices and unit labor costs: a new test of price stickiness," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 265-292, March.
    22. Erceg, Christopher J. & Henderson, Dale W. & Levin, Andrew T., 2000. "Optimal monetary policy with staggered wage and price contracts," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 281-313, October.
    23. Basu, Susanto & Fernald, John G, 1997. "Returns to Scale in U.S. Production: Estimates and Implications," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 249-283, April.
    24. Pashigian, B Peter, 1988. "Demand Uncertainty and Sales: A Study of Fashion and Markdown Pricin g," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(5), pages 936-953, December.
    25. J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), 1999. "Handbook of Macroeconomics," Handbook of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 1, number 1.
    26. Robert J. Barro, 1972. "A Theory of Monopolistic Price Adjustment," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 39(1), pages 17-26.
    27. Carlton, Dennis W, 1986. "The Rigidity of Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 637-658, September.
    28. Bils, Mark, 1987. "The Cyclical Behavior of Marginal Cost and Price," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(5), pages 838-855, December.
    29. Ben S. Bernanke & Julio J. Rotemberg (ed.), 1997. "NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026252242x, December.
    30. Fuhrer, Jeffrey C., 2010. "Inflation Persistence," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.),Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 9, pages 423-486, Elsevier.
    31. Roberts, John M, 1995. "New Keynesian Economics and the Phillips Curve," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(4), pages 975-984, November.
    32. Galí, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1999. "Inflation Dynamics: A Structural Economic Analysis," CEPR Discussion Papers 2246, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    33. Ball, Laurence & Romer, David, 1991. "Sticky Prices as Coordination Failure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(3), pages 539-552, June.
    34. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
    35. Ben S. Bernanke & Julio J. Rotemberg, 1997. "Editorial in "NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12"," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 1-6, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles

    Lists

    This item is featured on the following reading lists, Wikipedia, or ReplicationWiki pages:
    1. Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices (JPE 2004) in ReplicationWiki
    2. Economic Logic blog

    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:ucp:jpolec:v:112:y:2004:i:5:p:947-985. 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: (Journals Division). General contact details of provider: https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE .

    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.