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Measuring Transactions Costs from Observed Behavior: Market Choices in Peru

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  • Vakis, Renos
  • Sadoulet, Elisabeth
  • de Janvry, Alain

Abstract

Farmers incur proportional and fixed transactions costs in selling their crops on markets. Using data for Peruvian potato farmers, we propose a method to measure these transactions costs. When opportunities exist to sell a crop on alternative markets, the observed choice of market can be used to infer a monetary measure of transactions costs in market participation. The market choice model is first estimated at the reduced form level with a conditional logit, as a function of variables that explain transactions costs. We then use these market choice equations to control for selection in predicting the idiosyncratic prices that would be received on all markets and the idiosyncratic proportional transactions costs that would be incurred to reach all markets. The net between the two gives us a measure of effective farm-level prices. This allows us to estimate a semi-structural conditional logit of the market choice model. In this model, the choice of market is a function of predicted effective farm-level prices, and of market information that accounts for fixed transactions costs. We can use the estimated coefficients to derive the price equivalence of the fixed cost due to information. We find that the information on market price that farmers receive from their neighbors reduces fixed transactions costs by the equivalent of doubling the price received, and is equal to four times the average transportation cost.

Suggested Citation

  • Vakis, Renos & Sadoulet, Elisabeth & de Janvry, Alain, 2003. "Measuring Transactions Costs from Observed Behavior: Market Choices in Peru," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt7p81h66q, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdl:agrebk:qt7p81h66q
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Cogan, John F, 1981. "Fixed Costs and Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(4), pages 945-963, June.
    2. Albert Park & Hehui Jin & Scott Rozelle & Jikun Huang, 2002. "Market Emergence and Transition: Arbitrage, Transaction Costs, and Autarky in China's Grain Markets," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 84(1), pages 67-82.
    3. Steven Were Omamo, 1998. "Transport Costs and Smallholder Cropping Choices: An Application to Siaya District, Kenya," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(1), pages 116-123.
    4. Minten, Bart & Kyle, Steven, 1999. "The effect of distance and road quality on food collection, marketing margins, and traders' wages: evidence from the former Zaire," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 467-495, December.
    5. Stephan J. Goetz, 1992. "A Selectivity Model of Household Food Marketing Behavior in Sub-Saharan Africa," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 74(2), pages 444-452.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Cadot, Olivier & Dutoit, Laure & Olarreaga, Marcelo, 2006. "How costly is it for poor farmers to lift themselves out of poverty?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3881, The World Bank.
    2. Hou, Jianyun & Huo, Xuexi, 2015. "Transaction Costs and Farm-to-Market Linkages: Empirical Evidence from China Apple Producers," 2015 Conference, August 9-14, 2015, Milan, Italy 211746, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Salas Garcia, Vania B. & Fan, Qin, 2015. "Information Access and Smallholder Farmers’ Selling Decisions in Peru," 2015 AAEA & WAEA Joint Annual Meeting, July 26-28, San Francisco, California 205380, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association;Western Agricultural Economics Association.
    4. repec:bla:asiaec:v:31:y:2017:i:2:p:211-232 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. CAMARA, Alhassane, 2017. "Market participation of smallholders and the role of the upstream segment: evidence from Guinea," MPRA Paper 78903, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised May 2017.
    6. Marenya, Paswel Phiri & Barrett, Christopher B., 2009. "The effect of soil quality on fertilizer use rates among smallholder farmers in western Kenya," 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China 51671, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    7. Takeshima, Hiroyuki, 2008. "Behavior of subsistence producers in response to technological change- The elasticity of cassava production and home consumption in Benin," 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida 6108, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    8. Olivier Cadot & Laure Dutoit & Marcelo Olarreaga, 2005. "How Costly is it for Poor Farmers to Lift Themselves out of Subsistence?," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 05.09, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
    9. Wang LIJIA & Huo XUEXI, 2014. "Transaction Costs Comparison Between Cooperatives And Conventional Apple Producers: A Case Study Of Northwestern China," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 85(2), pages 233-255, June.
    10. Paswel P. Marenya & Christopher B. Barrett, 2009. "Soil quality and fertilizer use rates among smallholder farmers in western Kenya," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 40(5), pages 561-572, September.
    11. Giacomo Zanello & Chittur S. Srinivasan & Bhavani Shankar, 2014. "Transaction Costs, Information Technologies, and the Choice of Marketplace among Farmers in Northern Ghana," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(9), pages 1226-1239, September.
    12. Chamberlin, Jordan & Jayne, T.S., 2013. "Unpacking the Meaning of ‘Market Access’: Evidence from Rural Kenya," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 245-264.
    13. Okoye, B.C & Onyenweaku, C.E & Ukoha, O.O, 2010. "An Ordered Probit Model Analysis of Transaction Costs and Market Participation by Small-Holder Cassava Farmers in South-Eastern Nigeria," MPRA Paper 26114, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Codjo, Ogoudélé Simon & Fiamohe, Rose & Kpenavoun, Sylvain & Acclassato, Denis & Biaou, Gauthier, 2016. "Determinants of the choice of multi-modes of governance by producers and processors of paddy in Benin," 149th Seminar, October 27-28, 2016, Rennes, France 244791, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    15. Mujawamariya, G. & Burger, K. & D’Haese, M., 2015. "Market-driven production with transaction costs outlook: Gum arabic collection systems in Senegal," Journal of Forest Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 111-130.
    16. repec:gam:jeners:v:10:y:2017:i:11:p:1749-:d:117117 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Henning, Christian H.C.A. & Henningsen, Arne, 2005. "Modeling Price Response of Farm Households Under Imperfect Labor Markets: A Farm Household Approach to Family Farms in Poland," 94th Seminar, April 9-10, 2005, Ashford, UK 24431, European Association of Agricultural Economists.

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    Keywords

    transactions costs; market choice; information;

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