IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/wsi/gejxxx/v13y2013i02ngej-2012-0026.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Can Price Dispersion Reveal Distance-Related Trade Costs? Evidence from the United States

Author

Listed:
  • Michael A. Anderson

    (Washington and Lee University, Lexington, VA 24450, USA)

  • Kurt C. Schaefer

    () (Department of Economics, Calvin College, 1740 Knollcrest Circle SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546, USA)

  • Stephen L. S. Smith

    () (Gordon College, Wenham, MA 01984, USA)

Abstract

We offer insights on how distance-related trade costs may best be inferred from price-dispersion measures. Using a simple spatial model of price dispersion, we argue that measures of price dispersion that are not spatially informed can mislead researchers into concluding that distance-related costs are small even when such costs are the major determinant of price dispersion. With intra-United States data on eleven goods, we find that distance-related costs are large and are indeed underestimated when inferred from standard, non-spatial, price dispersion measures. Our empirical findings have implications for studies of market integration policies (such as trade liberalization and currency unions) and the significance of economic geography.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael A. Anderson & Kurt C. Schaefer & Stephen L. S. Smith, 2013. "Can Price Dispersion Reveal Distance-Related Trade Costs? Evidence from the United States," Global Economy Journal (GEJ), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 13(2), pages 151-173, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:wsi:gejxxx:v:13:y:2013:i:02:n:gej-2012-0026
    DOI: 10.1515/GEJ-2012-0026
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.worldscientific.com/doi/abs/10.1515/GEJ-2012-0026
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers

    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. Kenneth Rogoff, 1996. "The Purchasing Power Parity Puzzle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 647-668, June.
    2. Engel, Charles & Rogers, John H, 1996. "How Wide Is the Border?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1112-1125, December.
    3. Janet Ceglowski, 2003. "The law of one price: intranational evidence for Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(2), pages 373-400, May.
    4. Mario J. Crucini & Chris I. Telmer & Marios Zachariadis, 2005. "Understanding European Real Exchange Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 724-738, June.
    5. Bergin, Paul R. & Glick, Reuven, 2007. "Global price dispersion: Are prices converging or diverging?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(5), pages 703-729, September.
    6. Obstfeld, Maurice & Taylor, Alan M., 1997. "Nonlinear Aspects of Goods-Market Arbitrage and Adjustment: Heckscher's Commodity Points Revisited," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 441-479, December.
    7. Charles Engel & John H. Rogers, 2004. "European product market integration after the euro," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 19(39), pages 347-384, July.
    8. Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Linda L. Tesar, 2009. "Border Effect or Country Effect? Seattle May Not Be So Far from Vancouver After All," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 219-241, January.
    9. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth Rogoff, 2001. "The Six Major Puzzles in International Macroeconomics: Is There a Common Cause?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2000, Volume 15, pages 339-412, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Kano, Kazuko & Kano, Takashi & Takechi, Kazutaka, 2013. "Exaggerated death of distance: Revisiting distance effects on regional price dispersions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(2), pages 403-413.
    11. Rauch, James E., 1999. "Networks versus markets in international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 7-35, June.
    12. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2004. "Trade Costs," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(3), pages 691-751, September.
    13. Hillberry, Russell & Hummels, David, 2008. "Trade responses to geographic frictions: A decomposition using micro-data," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 527-550, April.
    14. Tony Warren & Gary Clyde Hufbauer & Erika Wada, 2002. "Benefits of Price Convergence: Speculative Calculations, The," Peterson Institute Press: Policy Analyses in International Economics, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number pa65, January.
    15. MarioJ. Crucini & Mototsugu Shintani & Takayuki Tsuruga, 2010. "The Law of One Price without the Border: The Role of Distance versus Sticky Prices," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(544), pages 462-480, May.
    16. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum, 2002. "Technology, Geography, and Trade," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(5), pages 1741-1779, September.
    17. Emi Nakamura & Dawit Zerom, 2010. "Accounting for Incomplete Pass-Through," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(3), pages 1192-1230.
    18. Yazgan, M. Ege & Yilmazkuday, Hakan, 2011. "Price-level convergence: New evidence from U.S. cities," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 110(2), pages 76-78, February.
    19. Ozlem Inanc & Marios Zachariadis, 2012. "The Importance Of Trade Costs In Deviations From The Law-Of-One-Price: Estimates Based On The Direction Of Trade," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 50(3), pages 667-689, July.
    20. David Hummels & Alexandre Skiba, 2004. "Shipping the Good Apples Out? An Empirical Confirmation of the Alchian-Allen Conjecture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(6), pages 1384-1402, December.
    21. Crucini, Mario J. & Yilmazkuday, Hakan, 2014. "Understanding long-run price dispersion," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 226-240.
    22. Janet Ceglowski, 2003. "The law of one price: intranational evidence for Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 36(2), pages 373-400, May.
    23. Rogers, John H., 2007. "Monetary union, price level convergence, and inflation: How close is Europe to the USA?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 785-796, April.
    24. Scott Bradford & Robert Z. Lawrence, 2004. "Has Globalization Gone Far Enough: The Costs of Fragmented Markets," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 349, October.
    25. Hummels, David, 2001. "Time As A Trade Barrier," Working papers 28701, Purdue University, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Global Trade Analysis Project.
    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. Nchake, Mamello A. & Edwards, Lawrence & Rankin, Neil, 2018. "Closer monetary union and product market integration in emerging economies: Evidence from the Common Monetary Area in Southern Africa," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 154-164.
    2. Mamello A Nchake & Lawrence Edwards & Tresor N Kaya, 2019. "The Size of the Border and Product Market Integration Between Lesotho and South Africa: A Production–Consumption Approach," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 28(1), pages 70-88.
    3. Neil Balchin & Lawrence Edwards & Asha Sundaram, 2015. "A Disaggregated Analysis of Product Price Integration in the Southern African Development Community," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 24(3), pages 390-415.
    4. A. Nchake Mamello & Edwards Lawrence & N. Kaya Tresor, 2017. "Working Paper 272 - Price effects of borders between Lesotho and South Africa," Working Paper Series 2389, African Development Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    spatial models; price dispersion; economic integration; trade costs; E31; F36; F41;

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • F36 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Financial Aspects of Economic Integration
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

    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:wsi:gejxxx:v:13:y:2013:i:02:n:gej-2012-0026. 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: (Tai Tone Lim). General contact details of provider: https://www.worldscientific.com/worldscinet/gej .

    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.