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Testing Hicksian Separability Over Space

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If relative prices of goods within a commodity group are constant, Hicksian separability lets the price of a single good represent the group price level. This is relied on by price questionnaires used in household surveys. Methods of estimating demand systems from household survey data also rely on Hicksian separability. Yet this restriction, and its weaker stochastic form under the Generalized Composite Commodity Theorem, remains untested in cross-sections. We use unique data from Vietnam with multiple specifications from within the same food groups to test if within-group relative prices are constant over space. The data firmly reject these restrictions.

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  • John Gibson & Bonggeun Kim, 2013. "Testing Hicksian Separability Over Space," Working Papers in Economics 13/07, University of Waikato.
  • Handle: RePEc:wai:econwp:13/07
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    1. Lewbel, Arthur, 1996. "Aggregation without Separability: A Generalized Composite Commodity Theorem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 524-543, June.
    2. Frank Asche & Helge Bremnes & Cathy R. Wessells, 1999. "Product Aggregation, Market Integration, and Relationships between Prices: An Application to World Salmon Markets," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(3), pages 568-581.
    3. Deaton, Angus, 1988. "Quality, Quantity, and Spatial Variation of Price," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(3), pages 418-430, June.
    4. McKelvey, Christopher, 2011. "Price, unit value, and quality demanded," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 157-169, July.
    5. Shumway, C. Richard & Davis, George C., 2001. "Does consistent aggregation really matter?," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 45(2), June.
    6. Borcherding, Thomas E & Silberberg, Eugene, 1978. "Shipping the Good Apples Out: The Alchian and Allen Theorem Reconsidered," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(1), pages 131-138, February.
    7. Deaton, Angus S & Muellbauer, John, 1980. "An Almost Ideal Demand System," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 312-326, June.
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    1. Gibson, John & Kim, Bonggeun, 2013. "Quality, Quantity, and Nutritional Impacts of Rice Price Changes in Vietnam," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 329-340.

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    Keywords

    composite commodity theorem; demand; prices; separability;

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