Dynamics of the U.S. price distribution

Journal Article (Journal Article)

We use microdata underlying U.S. consumer, producer and import price indices to document how the distribution of price changes evolves over time. Two striking features characterize pricing across all three datasets: (1) Frequency of price adjustments is countercyclical. (2) Frequency of price adjustments is correlated with variance. Conversely, other statistics that have received recent attention, like kurtosis, do not exhibit uniform patterns across our data sets. What implications do our empirical results have for monetary policy? Using a flexible accounting framework that collapses the high-dimensional distribution of price changes into a single measure of aggregate price flexibility, we show that flexibility is highly variable and countercyclical.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Berger, D; Vavra, J

Published Date

  • April 1, 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 103 /

Start / End Page

  • 60 - 82

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0014-2921

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2018.01.004

Citation Source

  • Scopus