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Free Content Price Changes in the Euro Area and the United States: Some Facts from Individual Consumer Price Data

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Abstract:

Prices of goods and services do not adjust immediately in response to changing demand and supply conditions. This paper characterizes the average frequency and size of price changes in the euro area and its member countries, investigates the determinants of the probability of price changes, and compares the evidence for the euro area with available U.S. results. The facts documented in this paper are based on evidence from individual price data recorded at the store level in all euro area countries except Ireland and Greece: that is in datasets covering Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain, which together account for around 97 percent of euro area GDP. The data used are the monthly price records underlying the computation of national Consumer Price Indices and Harmonized Consumer Price Indices. These data cover a large number of products selected on the basis of extensive Household Budget Surveys.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1257/089533006777641059

Publication date: March 1, 2006

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  • The Journal of Economic Perspectives (JEP) attempts to fill a gap between the general interest press and most other academic economics journals. The journal aims to publish articles that will serve several goals: to synthesize and integrate lessons learned from active lines of economic research; to provide economic analysis of public policy issues; to encourage cross-fertilization of ideas among the fields of thinking; to offer readers an accessible source for state-of-the-art economic thinking; to suggest directions for future research; to provide insights and readings for classroom use; and to address issues relating to the economics profession.
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