The Dynamics of Daily Retail Gasoline Prices

Michael Davis, Missouri University of Science and Technology

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Previous research has analyzed the behavior of retail gasoline stations in how they adjust their prices. In this paper we analyze the daily movements in prices of four retail gasoline stations located in Newburgh, New York. We find some evidence to support the notion that the behavior is explained by menu costs. There is substantial evidence that the firms adjust their prices asymmetrically, being more inclined to increase than to decrease prices. We conclude that the pricing behavior is being determined by a combination of search costs for the consumers and menu costs for the producers. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.