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Are internet prices sticky?

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  • Patrick Lünnemann

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  • Ladislav Wintr

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Abstract

This paper studies the behaviour of Internet prices. It compares price rigidities on the Internet and in traditional brick-and-mortar stores and provides a cross-country perspective. The data set covers a broad range of items typically sold over the Internet. It includes more than 5 million daily price quotes downloaded from price comparison web sites in France, Germany, Italy, the UK and the US. The following results emerge from our analysis. First, and contrary to the recent findings for common CPI data, Internet prices in the EU countries do not change less often than online prices in the US. Second, prices on the Internet are not necessarily more flexible than prices in traditional brick-and-mortar stores. Third, there is substantial heterogeneity in the frequency of price change across shop types and product categories. Fourth, the average price change on the Internet is relatively large, but smaller than the respective values reported for CPI data. Finally, panel logit estimates suggest that the likelihood of observing a price change is a function of both state- and time-dependent factors.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick Lünnemann & Ladislav Wintr, 2006. "Are internet prices sticky?," BCL working papers 22, Central Bank of Luxembourg.
  • Handle: RePEc:bcl:bclwop:bclwp022
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Klenow, Peter J. & Malin, Benjamin A., 2010. "Microeconomic Evidence on Price-Setting," Handbook of Monetary Economics,in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 6, pages 231-284 Elsevier.
    2. Anson, José & Boffa, Mauro & Helble, Matthias, 2014. "A Short-Run Analysis of Exchange Rates and International Trade with an Application to Australia, New Zealand, and Japan," ADBI Working Papers 471, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    3. Ernst Glatzer & Fabio Rumler, 2007. "Price Setting in Austria before and after the Euro Cash Changeover: Has Anything Changed in the Last Five Years?," Monetary Policy & the Economy, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank), issue 1, pages 85-99.
    4. Luis J. Álvarez & Emmanuel Dhyne & Marco Hoeberichts & Claudia Kwapil & Hervé Le Bihan & Patrick Lünnemann & Fernando Martins & Roberto Sabbatini & Harald Stahl & Philip Vermeulen & Jouko Vilmunen, 2006. "Sticky Prices in the Euro Area: A Summary of New Micro-Evidence," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(2-3), pages 575-584, 04-05.
    5. M. Utku Ozmen & Orhun Sevinc, 2011. "Price Rigidity In Turkey : Evidence From Micro Data," Working Papers 1125, Research and Monetary Policy Department, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey.
    6. Robert Somogyi & Janos Vincze, 2011. "Price Rigidity and Strategic Uncertainty An Agent-based Approach," IEHAS Discussion Papers 1135, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
    7. Emmanuel Dhyne & Jerzy Konieczny & Fabio Rumler & Patrick Sevestre, 2009. "Price rigidity in the euro area - An assessment," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 380, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    8. Sara Ellison & Christopher M. Snyder & Hongkai Zhang, 2016. "Costs of Managerial Attention and Activity as a Source of Sticky Prices: Structural Estimates from an Online Market," CESifo Working Paper Series 6285, CESifo Group Munich.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Price stickiness; Internet; price setting behaviour;

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms

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