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Price rigidity in Europe and the US: A comparative analysis using scanner data





This paper uses scanner data from two large retailers to offer new insights into the extent of price rigidity in Europe and the US. Recent empirical research in this field has made extensive use of monthly data to study price stickiness and to control for the impact of temporary sales. We show that the use of monthly data is potentially highly misleading. We employ scanner data in (bi)weekly frequency and highlight the importance of high frequency data in studying price rigidity. Regular prices show roughly the same degree of flexibility in Europe and the US, in line with recent empirical research, when we study monthly price series derived from our high frequency scanner data. This finding collapses, however, when the original scanner datasets in higher base frequency are examined. Regular prices are then far more flexible in the US than in Europe. This result is robust to the type of sales filter that we apply and the statistic used to capture price rigidity.

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Paper provided by Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration in its series Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium with number 10/684.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rug:rugwps:10/684
Contact details of provider: Postal: Hoveniersberg 4, B-9000 Gent
Phone: ++ 32 (0) 9 264 34 61
Fax: ++ 32 (0) 9 264 35 92
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  1. Mikhail Golosov & Robert E. Lucas Jr., 2007. "Menu Costs and Phillips Curves," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115, pages 171-199.
  2. Peter J. Klenow & Oleksiy Kryvtsov, 2007. "State-Dependent or Time-Dependent Pricing: Does It Matter for Recent U.S. Inflation?," Discussion Papers 07-007, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  3. Rotemberg, Julio J., 2005. "Customer anger at price increases, changes in the frequency of price adjustment and monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(4), pages 829-852, May.
  4. Masahiro Higo & Yumi Saita, 2007. "Price Setting in Japan: Evidence from CPI Micro Data," Bank of Japan Working Paper Series 07-E-20, Bank of Japan.
  5. N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis, 2001. "Sticky information versus sticky prices: a proposal to replace the New-Keynesian Phillips curve," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
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  7. Daniel Levy & Mark Bergen & Shantanu Dutta & Robert Venable, 2005. "The Magnitude of Menu Costs: Direct Evidence from Large U.S. Supermarket Chains," Macroeconomics 0505012, EconWPA.
  8. Peter Karadi & Adam Reiff, 2007. "Menu Costs and Inflation Asymmetries Some Micro Data Evidence," IEHAS Discussion Papers 0706, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
  9. Fabrizio Coricelli & Roman Horvath, 2008. "Price Setting And Market Structure: An Empirical Analysis Of Micro Data," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp938, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  10. Emmanuel Dhyne & Luis J. Álvarez & Hervé le Bihan & Giovanni Veronese & Daniel Dias & Johannes Hoffmann & Nicole Jonker & Patrick Lünnemann & Fabio Rumler & Jouko Vilmunen, 2005. "Price setting in the euro area: Some stylized facts from Individual Consumer Price Data," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0528, Banco de Espa�a.
  11. Sam Peltzman, 2000. "Prices Rise Faster than They Fall," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(3), pages 466-502, June.
  12. Gert Peersman, 2004. "The Transmission of Monetary Policy in the Euro Area: Are the Effects Different Across Countries?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 66(3), pages 285-308, 07.
  13. Shantanu Dutta & Mark Bergen & Daniel Levy & Robert Venable, 2005. "Menu Costs, Posted Prices, and Multiproduct Retailers," Macroeconomics 0505007, EconWPA.
  14. Anil K. Kashyap, 1991. "Sticky prices: new evidence from retail catalogs," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues 91-26, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  15. Mark Gertler & John Leahy, 2006. "A Phillips Curve with an Ss Foundation," NBER Working Papers 11971, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Sourav Ray & Haipeng (Allan) Chen & Mark E. Bergen & Daniel Levy, 2006. "Asymmetric Wholesale Pricing: Theory and Evidence," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 25(2), pages 131-154, 03-04.
  17. Etienne Gagnon, 2006. "Price Setting during Low and High Inflation: Evidence from Mexico," 2006 Meeting Papers 300, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  18. Jeffrey R. Campbell & Benjamin Eden, 2014. "Rigid Prices: Evidence From U.S. Scanner Data," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 55, pages 423-442, 05.
  19. Maarten Dossche & Freddy Heylen & Dirk Van den Poel, 2010. "The Kinked Demand Curve and Price Rigidity: Evidence from Scanner Data," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 112(4), pages 723-752, December.
  20. Klenow, Peter J. & Malin, Benjamin A., 2010. "Microeconomic Evidence on Price-Setting," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 6, pages 231-284 Elsevier.
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  22. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
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  24. Andrew C. Caplin & Daniel F. Spulber, 1987. "Menu Costs and the Neutrality of Money," NBER Working Papers 2311, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. repec:nbr:nberre:0126 is not listed on IDEAS
  26. Michael Dotsey & Robert G. King & Alexander L. Wolman, 1999. "State-Dependent Pricing And The General Equilibrium Dynamics Of Money And Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 655-690, May.
  27. Emi Nakamura & Jón Steinsson, 2008. "Five Facts about Prices: A Reevaluation of Menu Cost Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1415-1464, November.
  28. V. V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2000. "Sticky Price Models of the Business Cycle: Can the Contract Multiplier Solve the Persistence Problem?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1151-1180, September.
  29. Martin Eichenbaum & Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2008. "Reference Prices and Nominal Rigidities," NBER Working Papers 13829, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  30. Fredrik Wulfsberg, 2009. "Price adjustments and inflation - evidence from Norwegian consumer price data 1975-2004," Working Paper 2009/11, Norges Bank.
  31. Cecchetti, Stephen G., 1986. "The frequency of price adjustment : A study of the newsstand prices of magazines," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 255-274, April.
  32. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
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