Frequency of Price Adjustment and Pass-through


Gopinath, Gita, and Oleg Itskhoki. 2010. “Frequency of Price Adjustment and Pass-through.” Quarterly Journal of Economics 125 (2): 675-727.


We empirically document using U.S. import prices that on average goods with a high frequency of price adjustment have a long-run pass-through that is at least twice as high as that of low-frequency adjusters. We show theoretically that this relationship should follow because variable mark-ups that reduce long-run pass-through also reduce the curvature of the profit function when expressed as a function of the cost shocks, making the firm less willing to adjust its price. Lastly, we quantitatively evaluate a dynamic menu-cost model and show that the variable mark-up channel can generate significant variation in frequency, equivalent to 37% of the observed variation in the data. On the other hand the standard workhorse model with constant elasticity of demand and Calvo or state dependent pricing has difficulty matching the facts.

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Last updated on 04/11/2020