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Bayesian Estimation of Demand Functions under Block Rate Pricing

  • Koji Miyawaki

    (Nihon University, Population Research Institute)

  • Yasuhiro Omori

    (Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo)

  • Akira Hibiki

    (Department of Social Engineering, Tokyo Institute of Technology)

This article proposes a Bayesian estimation method of demand functions under block rate pricing, focusing on increasing one, where we first considered the separability condition explicitly which has been ignored in the previous literature. Under this pricing structure, price changes when consumption exceeds a certain threshold and the consumer faces a utility maximization problem subject to a piecewise-linear budget constraint. Solving this maximization problem leads to a statistical model that includes many inequalities, such as the so-called separability condition. Because of them, it is virtually impractical to numerically maximize the likelihood function. Thus, taking a hierarchical Bayesian approach, we implement a Markov chain Monte Carlo simulation to properly estimate the demand function. We find, however, that the convergence of the distribution of simulated samples to the posterior distribution is slow, requiring an additional scale transformation step for parameters to the Gibbs sampler. These proposed methods are applied to estimate the Japanese residential water demand function.

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File URL: http://www.cirje.e.u-tokyo.ac.jp/research/dp/2009/2009cf631.pdf
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Paper provided by CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo in its series CIRJE F-Series with number CIRJE-F-631.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tky:fseres:2009cf631
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  1. Kunitomo, Naoto & Sato, Seisho, 1996. "Asymmetry in economic time series and the simultaneous switching autoregressive model," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 1-34, March.
  2. De Jong, G. C., 1990. "An indirect utility model of car ownership and private car use," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 971-985, July.
  3. G. Burtless & J. A. Hausman, 1977. "The Effect of Taxation on Labor Supply: Evaluating the Gary Negative Income Tax Experiment," Working papers 211, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Jasper M. Dalhuisen & Raymond J. G. M. Florax & JHenri L. F. de Groot & Peter Nijkamp, 2003. "Price and Income Elasticities of Residential Water Demand: A Meta-Analysis," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 79(2), pages 292-308.
  5. Herriges, Joseph A & King, Kathleen Kuester, 1994. "Residential Demand for Electricity under Inverted Block Rates: Evidence from a Controlled Experiment," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 12(4), pages 419-30, October.
  6. Hausman, Jerry A, 1985. "The Econometrics of Nonlinear Budget Sets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1255-82, November.
  7. Peter C. Reiss & Matthew W. White, 2005. "Household Electricity Demand, Revisited," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(3), pages 853-883.
  8. Hanemann, W Michael, 1984. "Discrete-Continuous Models of Consumer Demand," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 541-61, May.
  9. Chib, Siddhartha, 1992. "Bayes inference in the Tobit censored regression model," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1-2), pages 79-99.
  10. Julie A. Hewitt & W. Michael Hanemann, 1995. "A Discrete/Continuous Choice Approach to Residential Water Demand under Block Rate Pricing," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 71(2), pages 173-192.
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