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An empirical test of theories of price valuation using a semiparametric approach, reference prices, and accounting for heterogeneity


  • Yasemin Boztug
  • Lutz Hildebrandt


In this paper we estimate and empirically test different behavioral theories of consumer reference price formation. Two major theories are proposed to model the reference price reaction: assimilation contrast theory and prospect theory. We assume that different consumer segments will use different reference prices. The study builds on earlier research by Kalyanaram and Little (1994); however, in contrast to their work, we use parametric and semiparametric approaches to detect the structure of the underlying data sets. The different models are tested using a program module in GAUSS that was able to account for heterogeneity. The model types were calibrated by a simulation study. The calibrated modules were then used to analyze real market data.

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  • Yasemin Boztug & Lutz Hildebrandt, 2005. "An empirical test of theories of price valuation using a semiparametric approach, reference prices, and accounting for heterogeneity," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2005-057, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:hum:wpaper:sfb649dp2005-057

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. DeSarbo, Wayne S. & Kim, Youngchan & Fong, Duncan, 1998. "A Bayesian multidimensional scaling procedure for the spatial analysis of revealed choice data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1-2), pages 79-108, November.
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    price valuation; semiparametric approach; reference prices; heterogeneity;

    JEL classification:

    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • M31 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Marketing

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