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Price setting behaviour in the Netherlands: results of a survey

  • Stokman, Ad C.J.
  • Hoeberichts, Marco M.

This paper presents the results of a survey among Dutch firms on price setting behaviour in the Netherlands. It aims to identify how sticky prices are, which prices are sticky and why they are sticky. It is part of the Eurosystem Inflation Persistence Network (IPN). The most distinctive feature of the Dutch survey is its broad coverage of the business community (seven sectors and seven size classes). Our primary finding is that price setting behaviour depends critically on both a firm’s size and the competitive environment it faces. Small firms in particular adopt more rigid pricing policies, and the weaker the competition a firm faces, the stickier a company’s price will be. Furthermore, we find that wholesale and retail prices are more flexible than those for business-to-business services. The survey suggests that explicit and informal contracting are the most important sources of price stickiness. Menu costs and psychological pricing – two prominent explanations of price stickiness in the literature – are of minor importance. Finally, there is clear evidence of asymmetries in shocks driving price increases and decreases. JEL Classification: E30, D40

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Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 0607.

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Date of creation: Apr 2006
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Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20060607
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  3. Rotemberg, Julio J & Saloner, Garth, 1987. "The Relative Rigidity of Monopoly Pricing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(5), pages 917-26, December.
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  5. Álvarez, Luis J. & Hernando, Ignacio, 2005. "The price setting behaviour of Spanish firms: evidence from survey data," Working Paper Series 0538, European Central Bank.
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  7. Laurence Ball & N. Gregory Mankiw, 1994. "A sticky-price manifesto," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Apr.
  8. Martins, Fernando, 2005. "The price setting behaviour of Portuguese firms: evidence from survey data," Working Paper Series 0562, European Central Bank.
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  10. Aucremanne, Luc & Druant, Martine, 2005. "Price-setting behaviour in Belgium: what can be learned from an ad hoc survey?," Working Paper Series 0448, European Central Bank.
  11. Fabiani, Silvia & Druant, Martine & Hernando, Ignacio & Kwapil, Claudia & Landau, Bettina & Loupias, Claire & Martins, Fernando & Matha, Thomas & Sabbatini, Roberto & Stahl, Harald & Stokman, Ad, 2006. "What Firms' Surveys Tell Us about Price-Setting Behavior in the Euro Area," MPRA Paper 808, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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  13. Hall, Simon & Walsh, Mark & Yates, Anthony, 2000. "Are UK Companies' Prices Sticky?," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 52(3), pages 425-46, July.
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  15. Silvia Fabiani & Angela Gattulli & Roberto Sabbatini, 2004. "The pricing behaviour of Italian firms: new survey evidence on price stickiness," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 515, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  16. Apel, Mikael & Friberg, Richard & Hallsten, Kerstin, 2005. "Microfoundations of Macroeconomic Price Adjustment: Survey Evidence from Swedish Firms," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(2), pages 313-38, April.
  17. Alan S. Blinder, 1991. "Why are Prices Sticky? Preliminary Results from an Interview Study," NBER Working Papers 3646, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Huang, Kevin X. D. & Liu, Zheng, 2001. "Production chains and general equilibrium aggregate dynamics," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 437-462, October.
  19. C.K. Folkertsma & C. van Renselaar & A.C.J. Stokman, 2002. "Smooth Euro Changeover, Higher Prices? Results of a Survey Among Dutch Retailers," WO Research Memoranda (discontinued) 682, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
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