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Customer flows, countercyclical markups, and the persistent effects of monetary shocks

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  • Peter N. Ireland

Abstract

This paper develops a general equilibrium model in which households face fixed costs associated with searching for a new supplier of consumption goods. These search costs provide firms with some monopoly power over their existing customers and generate the kind of customer flow dynamics first considered by Phelps and Winter. Customer flows, in turn, cause markups of price over marginal cost to vary countercyclically, both amplify and propagate the effects of technology shocks on output, and allow the effects of monetary shocks on output to persist.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter N. Ireland, 1995. "Customer flows, countercyclical markups, and the persistent effects of monetary shocks," Working Paper 95-04, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedrwp:95-04
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gordon, Robert J, 1981. "Output Fluctuations and Gradual Price Adjustment," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 19(2), pages 493-530, June.
    2. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1991. "Markups and the Business Cycle," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1991, Volume 6, pages 63-140 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
    4. Judd, Kenneth L., 1985. "The law of large numbers with a continuum of IID random variables," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 19-25, February.
    5. Cogley, Timothy & Nason, James M, 1995. "Output Dynamics in Real-Business-Cycle Models," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 492-511, June.
    6. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1972. "Expectations and the neutrality of money," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 103-124, April.
    7. Gottfries, Nils, 1986. " Price Dynamics of Exporting and Import-Competing Firms," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 88(2), pages 417-436.
    8. Tobin, James, 1977. "How Dead Is Keynes?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 15(4), pages 459-468, October.
    9. Laurence Ball & David Romer, 1990. "Real Rigidities and the Non-Neutrality of Money," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 57(2), pages 183-203.
    10. Blinder, Alan S. & Fischer, Stanley, 1981. "Inventories, rational expectations, and the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 277-304.
    11. Olivier J. Blanchard, 1982. "Price Asynchronization and Price Level Inertia," NBER Working Papers 0900, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Bils, Mark, 1987. "The Cyclical Behavior of Marginal Cost and Price," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(5), pages 838-855, December.
    13. Feldman, Mark & Gilles, Christian, 1985. "An expository note on individual risk without aggregate uncertainty," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 26-32, February.
    14. Wright, Randall, 1986. "Job Search and Cyclical Unemployment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(1), pages 38-55, February.
    15. Robert E. Hall, 1975. "The Rigidity of Wages and the Persistence of Unemployment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 6(2), pages 301-350.
    16. Peter Howitt, 1988. "Business Cycles With Costly Search and Recruiting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 103(1), pages 147-165.
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    Keywords

    Business cycles ; Prices;

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