European Central Bank - eurosystem
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Η ΕΚΤ Ενημέρωση Επεξηγήσεις Έρευνα & Εκδόσεις Στατιστικές Νομισματική πολιτική Το ευρώ Πληρωμές & Αγορές Θέσεις εργασίας
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Jesse Wursten

9 October 2023
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2853
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Abstract
We compare supermarket price setting in the US and the euro area and assess its impact on food inflation. We introduce a novel scanner dataset of Germany, the Netherlands, France, and Italy (EA4) and contrast it with an equivalent dataset from the US. We find that both higher frequency and stronger state dependence of price changes contribute to higher flexibility of supermarket inflation in the US relative to the euro area. We argue that the driving force behind both factors is higher cross-sectional volatility in the US. Larger product-level fluctuations both force retailers to adjust prices more frequently and increase price misalignments, which increase the selection of large price changes. [...]
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
F44 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→International Business Cycles
17 July 2023
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 319
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Abstract
This paper documents five stylised facts relating to price adjustment in the euro area, using various micro price datasets collected in a period with relatively low and stable inflation. First, price changes are infrequent in the core sectors. On average, 12% of consumer prices change each month, falling to 8.5% when sales prices are excluded. The frequency of producer price adjustment is greater (25%), reflecting that the prices of intermediate goods and energy are more flexible. For both consumer and producer prices, cross-sectoral heterogeneity is more pronounced than cross-country heterogeneity. Second, price changes tend to be large and heterogeneous. For consumer prices, the typical absolute price change is about 10%, and the distribution of price changes shows a broad dispersion. For producer prices, the typical absolute price change is smaller, but nevertheless larger than inflation. Third, price setting is mildly state-dependent: the probability of price adjustment rises with the size of price misalignment, mainly reflecting idiosyncratic shocks, but it does not increase very sharply. Fourth, for both consumer and producer prices, the repricing rate showed no trend in the period 2005-19 but was more volatile in the short run. Fifth, small cyclical variations in frequency did not contribute much to fluctuations in aggregate inflation, which instead mainly reflected shifts in the average size of price changes. Consistent with idiosyncratic shocks as the main driver of price changes, aggregate disturbances affected inflation by shifting the relative number of firms increasing or decreasing their prices, rather than the size of price increases and decreases.
JEL Code
E3 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles
E5 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit
14 June 2021
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2566
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Abstract
We use microdata to estimate the strength of price selection { a key metric for the effect of monetary policy on the real economy. We propose a product-level proxy for mispricing and assess whether products with larger mispricing respond with a higher probability to identified monetary and credit shocks. We find that they do not, suggesting selection is absent. Instead, we detect state-dependent adjustment on the gross extensive margin. Our results are broadly consistent with second-generation state-dependent pricing models and sizable effects of monetary policy on the real economy.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy