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On Price-Setting for Identical Products in Markets without Formal Trade Barriers

Author

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  • Hassink, Wolter

    () (Utrecht University)

  • Schettkat, Ronald

    () (University of Wuppertal)

Abstract

This paper investigates price-setting for truly homogenous products sold in markets without any formal trade barriers. We use data from IKEA, a furniture company selling identical products in an identical shopping environment in different EU countries. We get four remarkable outcomes: 1) The law of one price does not hold. 2) Country-specific effects of non-tradable cost components are important. 3) Pricing to the market surely occurs but price discrimination is limited by incomplete information. 4) The unexplained part of between-country price variation for identical products is about 75% which leaves most of the inter-country price variation unexplained.

Suggested Citation

  • Hassink, Wolter & Schettkat, Ronald, 2001. "On Price-Setting for Identical Products in Markets without Formal Trade Barriers," IZA Discussion Papers 315, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp315
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kasa, Kenneth, 1992. "Adjustment costs and pricing-to-market theory and evidence," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1-2), pages 1-30, February.
    2. Knetter, Michael M, 1989. "Price Discrimination by U.S. and German Exporters," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 198-210, March.
    3. Kenneth Rogoff, 1996. "The Purchasing Power Parity Puzzle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 647-668, June.
    4. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Michael M. Knetter, 1997. "Goods Prices and Exchange Rates: What Have We Learned?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 1243-1272.
    5. Michael M. Knetter, 1997. "The Segmentation of International Markets: Evidence from The Economist," NBER Working Papers 5878, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Frank Verboven, 2001. "The Evolution of Price Dispersion in the European Car Market," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 68(4), pages 811-848.
    7. Sven W. Arndt & J. David Richardson, 1987. "Real-Financial Linkages Among Open Economies," NBER Working Papers 2230, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Kenneth A. Froot & Michael Kim & Kenneth Rogoff, 1995. "The Law of One Price Over 700 Years," NBER Working Papers 5132, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Varian, Hal R., 1989. "Price discrimination," Handbook of Industrial Organization,in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 10, pages 597-654 Elsevier.
    10. Atish R. Ghosh & Holger C. Wolf, 1994. "Pricing in International Markets: Lessons From The Economist," NBER Working Papers 4806, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Frank Verboven, 1996. "International Price Discrimination in the European Car Market," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 27(2), pages 240-268, Summer.
    12. Kravis, Irving B & Lipsey, Robert E, 1977. "Export Prices and the Transmission of Inflation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(1), pages 155-163, February.
    13. Isard, Peter, 1977. "How Far Can We Push the "Law of One Price"?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(5), pages 942-948, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Baxter, Marianne & Landry, Anthony E., 2012. "IKEA: product, pricing, and pass-through," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov, pages 1-32.
    2. Gita Gopinath & Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Chang-Tai Hsieh & Nicholas Li, 2009. "Estimating the border effect: some new evidence," Working Papers 09-10, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    3. Jean Imbs & Haroon Mumtaz & Morten O. Ravn & Hélène Rey, 2005. "PPP Strikes Back: Aggregation And the Real Exchange Rate," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(1), pages 1-43.
    4. Michael Ferrantino, 2006. "Quantifying the Trade and Economic Effects of Non-Tariff Measures," OECD Trade Policy Papers 28, OECD Publishing.
    5. Maria Cipollina & Luca Salvatici, 2008. "Measuring Protection: Mission Impossible?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(3), pages 577-616, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    price discrimination; Price setting;

    JEL classification:

    • D4 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design

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