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Temporal Distribution of Price Changes : Staggering in the Large and Synchronization in the Small

  • Emmanuel Dhyne

    ()

    (National Bank of Belgium, Research Department
    Centre de Recherche Warocqué, Université de Mons-Hainaut)

  • Jerzy Konieczny

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ont., Canada)

Temporal distribution of individual price changes is of crucial importance for business cycle theory and for the micro-foundations of price adjustment. While it is routinely assumed that price changes are staggered over time, both theory and evidence are ambiguous. We use a large Belgian data set to analyze whether price changes are staggered or synchronized. We find that the more aggregate the data, the closer the distribution to perfect staggering. This result holds for both aggregation across goods and across locations. Our results provide support for Bhaskar’s (2002) model of synchronized adjustment within, and staggered adjustment across, industries.

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Paper provided by National Bank of Belgium in its series Working Paper Research with number 116.

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Length: 52 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nbb:reswpp:200706-02
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  1. V. V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 1996. "Sticky Price Models of the Business Cycle: Can the Contract Multiplier Solve the Persistence Problem?," NBER Working Papers 5809, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  3. repec:nbr:nberre:0126 is not listed on IDEAS
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  5. N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis, 2001. "Sticky Information Versus Sticky Prices: A Proposal to Replace the New Keynesian Phillips Curve," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1922, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
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  11. Fisher, Timothy C. G. & Konieczny, Jerzy D., 2000. "Synchronization of price changes by multiproduct firms: evidence from Canadian newspaper prices," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 271-277, September.
  12. Laurence Ball & Stephen G. Cecchetti, 1986. "Imperfect information and staggered price setting," Research Working Paper 86-08, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  13. Fischer, Stanley, 1977. "Long-Term Contracts, Rational Expectations, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 191-205, February.
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  17. Chakrabarti, Rajesh & Scholnick, Barry, 2005. "Nominal rigidities without literal menu costs: evidence from E-commerce," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 187-191, February.
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  19. Emmanuel Dhyne & Luis J. Alvarez & Herve Le Bihan & Giovanni Veronese & Daniel Dias & Johannes Hoffmann & Nicole Jonker & Patrick Lunnemann & Fabio Rumler & Jouko Vilmunen, 2006. "Price Changes in the Euro Area and the United States: Some Facts from Individual Consumer Price Data," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(2), pages 171-192, Spring.
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