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Sales, Quantity Surcharge, and Consumer Inattention

Author

Listed:
  • Sofronis Clerides

    () (University of Cyprus; CEPR; RCEA)

  • Pascal Courty

    () (University of Victoria; CEPR)

Abstract

Quantity surcharges occur when firms market a product in two sizes and offer a promotion on the small size: the large size then costs more per unit than the small one. When quantity surcharges occur the sales of the large size decrease only slightly despite the fact that the small size is a cheaper option - a clear arbitrage opportunity. This behavior is consistent with the notion of rationally inattentive consumers that has been developed in models of information frictions. We discuss implications for consumer decision making, demand estimation, and firm pricing.

Suggested Citation

  • Sofronis Clerides & Pascal Courty, 2010. "Sales, Quantity Surcharge, and Consumer Inattention," Working Paper series 32_10, Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis.
  • Handle: RePEc:rim:rimwps:32_10
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Raj Chetty & Adam Looney & Kory Kroft, 2009. "Salience and Taxation: Theory and Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1145-1177, September.
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    5. Michelle Sovinsky Goeree, 2005. "Advertising in the US Personal Computer Industry," Industrial Organization 0503002, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Mondria, Jordi, 2010. "Portfolio choice, attention allocation, and price comovement," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(5), pages 1837-1864, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Montinari, Natalia & Runnemark, Emma & Wengström, Erik, 2017. "Self-Scanning and Self-Control: A Field Experiment on Real-Time Feedback and Shopping Behavior," Working Papers 2017:15, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    2. Carmine Ornaghi & Mirco Tonin, 2018. "Water Tariffs and Consumers' Inaction," BEMPS - Bozen Economics & Management Paper Series BEMPS50, Faculty of Economics and Management at the Free University of Bozen.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    quantity surcharge; sales; promotions; consumer inattention; quantity discounts; nonlinear pricing;

    JEL classification:

    • L12 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Monopoly; Monopolization Strategies
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • D4 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design

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