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Asymmetric Price Adjustment in the Small

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  • Chen, Haipeng (Allan)
  • Levy, Daniel
  • Ray, Sourav
  • Bergen, Mark

Abstract

Analyses of a large retail scanner price data set reveal a new and surprising regularity – small price increases occur more frequently than small price decreases for price changes of up to 10¢. That is, we find asymmetric price adjustment “in the small.” Furthermore, it turns out that inflation offers only a partial explanation for the finding. Indeed, substantial proportion of the asymmetry remains unexplained, even after accounting for the inflation. For example, the asymmetry holds also after excluding periods of inflation from the data, and even for products whose price had not increased. The findings hold for different aggregate and disaggregate measures of inflation and also after allowing for lagged price adjustments.

Suggested Citation

  • Chen, Haipeng (Allan) & Levy, Daniel & Ray, Sourav & Bergen, Mark, 2008. "Asymmetric Price Adjustment in the Small," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 728-737.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:espost:206846
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Asymmetric Price Adjustment; Price Rigidity; Inflation; Rational Inattention; Monetary Policy;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory
    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L16 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Industrial Organization and Macroeconomics; Macroeconomic Industrial Structure
    • M31 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Marketing

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