IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The price is not always right : on the impacts of (commodity) prices on households (and countries)

  • Lederman, Daniel
  • Porto, Guido

This paper provides an overview of the impact of once-and-for-all changes in commodity prices and other prices on household welfare. It begins with a collection of stylized facts related to commodities based on household survey data from Latin America and Africa. The data uncover strong commodity dependence in both continents: households typically allocate a large fraction of their budget to commodities and they often depend on commodities to earn their income. This income and expenditure dependency suggests sizable impacts and adjustments following commodity-price shocks. The paper explores these effects with a review of the literature. It studies consumption and income responses, labor-market responses, and spillovers across sectors. It ends up providing evidence on the relative magnitudes of various mechanisms through which commodity prices affect household (and national) welfare in developing economies.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6858.

in new window

Date of creation: 01 May 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6858
Contact details of provider: Postal: 1818 H Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20433
Phone: (202) 477-1234
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Michael M. Knetter, 1997. "Goods Prices and Exchange Rates: What Have We Learned?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(3), pages 1243-1272, September.
  2. Nigel Key & Elisabeth Sadoulet & Alain De Janvry, 2000. "Transactions Costs and Agricultural Household Supply Response," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(2), pages 245-259.
  3. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Nina Pavcnik, 2007. "Distributional Effects of Globalization in Developing Countries," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 45(1), pages 39-82, March.
  4. Campa, José Manuel & Goldberg, Linda S., 2004. "Exchange Rate Pass-Through into Import Prices," CEPR Discussion Papers 4391, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Jed Friedman & James Levinsohn, 2001. "The Distributional Impacts of Indonesia's Financial Crisis on Household Welfare: A 'Rapid Response' Methodology," Working Papers 482, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  6. Bob Baulch, 1997. "Transfer Costs, Spatial Arbitrage, and Testing for Food Market Integration," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(2), pages 477-487.
  7. Porto, Guido G., 2006. "Using survey data to assess the distributional effects of trade policy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 140-160, September.
  8. Ferreira, Francisco H. G. & Fruttero, Anna & Leite, Phillippe & Lucchetti, Leonardo, 2011. "Rising food prices and household welfare : evidence from Brazil in 2008," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5652, The World Bank.
  9. de Janvry, Alain & Fafchamps, Marcel & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 1991. "Peasant Household Behaviour with Missing Markets: Some Paradoxes Explained," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(409), pages 1400-417, November.
  10. Porto, Guido G., 2005. "Informal export barriers and poverty," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 447-470, July.
  11. Mellor, John W & Johnston, Bruce F, 1984. "The World Food Equation: Interrelations among Development, Employment, and Food Consumption," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 22(2), pages 531-74, June.
  12. Xavier Cirera & Channing Arndt, 2008. "Measuring the impact of road rehabilitation on spatial market efficiency in maize markets in Mozambique," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 39(1), pages 17-28, 07.
  13. Burstein, Ariel T. & Neves, Joao C. & Rebelo, Sergio, 2003. "Distribution costs and real exchange rate dynamics during exchange-rate-based stabilizations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1189-1214, September.
  14. Deaton, Angus, 1988. "Quality, Quantity, and Spatial Variation of Price," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(3), pages 418-30, June.
  15. Maertens, Miet & Swinnen, Johan F.M., 2009. "Trade, Standards, and Poverty: Evidence from Senegal," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 161-178, January.
  16. Wodon, Quentin & Tsimpo, Clarence & Backiny-Yetna, Prospere & Joseph, George & Adoho, Franck & Coulombe, Harold, 2008. "Potential impact of higher food prices on poverty : summary estimates for a dozen west and central African countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4745, The World Bank.
  17. Heltberg, R. & Tarp, F., 2002. "Agricultural supply response and poverty in Mozambique," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 103-124, April.
  18. Daniel Lederman, 2013. "International trade and inclusive growth: a primer," Indian Growth and Development Review, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 6(1), pages 88-112, March.
  19. Deaton, Angus, 1987. "Estimation of own- and cross-price elasticities from household survey data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 36(1-2), pages 7-30.
  20. Kenneth Rogoff, 1996. "The Purchasing Power Parity Puzzle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 647-668, June.
  21. L. Alan Winters & Neil McCulloch & Andrew McKay, 2004. "Trade Liberalization and Poverty: The Evidence So Far," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(1), pages 72-115, March.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6858. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.