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The Price Elasticity for Gasoline Revisited

Rolando F. Pelaez

Year: 1981
Volume: Volume 2
Number: Number 4
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol2-No4-6
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Abstract:
Energy conservation has been a major goal of three administrations, yet disagreement about how to achieve it has hampered conservation efforts. Advocates of nonmarket rationing claim that gasoline demand is highly inelastic, and hence that higher prices would result mainly in substantial income redistribution. In contrast, economists typically point to the price mechanism as the best method for promoting conservation. Clearly the issue depends to a great degree on the price elasticity of demand for energy. Since nearly one-half of the petroleum consumed in the United States is used as motor fuel, this note focuses on the price elasticity for gasoline.



Petroleum Price Elasticity, Income Effects, and OPEC's Pricing Policy

F. Gerard Adams and Jaime Marquez

Year: 1984
Volume: Volume 5
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol5-No1-7
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Abstract:
A standard result from static economic theory is that a monopolist with zero cost will maximize profits by charging the price at which the demand has unit elasticity. Yet, the demand for petroleum, as seen by consumers, is price inelastic, and empirical estimates of the price elasticity for petroleum are typically less than one. Given the relatively low production cost for Middle East oil and the optimization rule referred to above, a natural question is whether OPEC, acting as a monopoly, has exhausted its potential for forcing price increases or whether it will ultimately be able to charge still higher prices as it tries to optimize its earnings. This possibility of higher oil prices is important for OPEC and for oil-consuming countries-for OPEC because the finite nature of resources implies that excess production today represents an irrecoverable loss; for consuming countries because of the high cost of oil and the adverse consequences of still higher oil prices on inflation and unemployment.



Price Elasticity of Demand for Oil and the Terms of Trade of the OPEC Countries

M. M. Metwally and A. T. Arab

Year: 1987
Volume: Volume 8
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol8-No1-4
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Abstract:
The price elasticity of demand for oil has changed significantly since the sharp rise in oil prices in late 1973. Although oil is still a necessary commodity with a price elasticity of less than one, the policies recently introduced by many importing countries to store oil and reduce its consumption, the continuous development of energy alternatives, and the increase in oil suppliers have contributed significantly to the rise in the price elasticity of demand for this vital commodity.



Price Elasticities of Natural Gas Demand in France and West Germany

Javier Estrada and Ole Fugleberg

Year: 1989
Volume: Volume 10
Number: Number 3
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol10-No3-5
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Abstract:
This article analyzes the own-price elasticities of natural gas and cross-price elasticities between gas and other fuels in France and West Germany. A model with constant substitution elasticities would not give enough information to study interfuel competition. Therefore we adopted a model based on translog functions, which has few restrictions on measuring elasticities of energy demand.



Explaining the Variation in Elasticity Estimates of Gasoline Demand in the United States: A Meta-Analysis

Molly Espey

Year: 1996
Volume: Volume17
Number: Number 3
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol17-No3-4
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Abstract:
Meta-analysis is used to determine if there are factors that systematically affect price and income elasticity estimates in studies of gasoline demand in the United States. Elasticity estimates from previous studies are used as the dependent variable with data characteristics, model structure, and estimation technique as the independent variables. Included among the explanatory variables a rejunctional form, lag structure, time span, and national setting (U.S. versus the U.S. pooled with other countries). Inclusion of vehicle ownership in gasoline demand studies is found to result in lower estimates of income elasticity, data sets which pool U.S. and foreign data result in larger (absolute) estimates of both price and income elasticity, and the small difference between static and dynamic models suggests that lagged responses to price or income changes are relatively short. This study also found that elasticity estimates appear relatively robust across estimation techniques.



The Price Elasticity of Electricity Demand in the United States: A Three-Dimensional Analysis

Paul J. Burke and Ashani Abayasekara

Year: 2018
Volume: Volume 39
Number: Number 2
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.39.2.pbur
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Abstract:
In this paper we employ a dataset of three dimensions - state, sector, and year - to estimate the short- and long-run price elasticities of state-level electricity demand in the United States. Our sample covers the period 2003-2015. We contribute to the literature by employing instrumental variable estimation approaches, using the between estimator, and pursuing panel specifications that enable us to control for multiple dimensions of fixed effects. We conclude that state-level electricity demand is very price inelastic in the short run, with a same-year elasticity of -0.1. The long-run elasticity is near -1, larger than often believed. Among the sectors, it is industry that has the largest long-run price elasticity of demand. This appears to in part be due to electricity-intensive industrial activities clustering in low-price states.



Refining the evidence: British Columbia’s carbon tax and household gasoline consumption

Chad Lawley and Vincent Thivierge

Year: 2018
Volume: Volume 39
Number: Number 2
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.39.2.claw
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Abstract:
The impact of carbon prices on consumer behavior is a central element in current policy debates dealing with mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions. We examine the impact of British Columbia's carbon tax on private automobile gasoline use. We control for several factors that influenced gasoline demand during our study period, including local public transit improvements and increased cross-border shopping. Our results suggest that a 5 cent per litre carbon tax reduced gasoline consumption by 8%. We find that households residing in Vancouver and other cities responded to the carbon tax, whereas households in small towns and rural areas did not respond. We perform several sensitivity analyses. Even our most conservative lower bound estimate suggests that a 5 cent per litre carbon tax reduced gasoline consumption by 5%.



Response to Extreme Energy Price Changes: Evidence from Ukraine

Anna Alberini, Olha Khymych, and Milan Šcasný

Year: 2019
Volume: Volume 40
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.40.1.aalb
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Abstract:
Large but temporary price increases are sometimes deployed on days when the demand for electricity is extremely high due to exceptionally warm or cold weather. But what happens when the extreme price changes are permanent? Between January 2013 and April 2016, natural gas and electricity prices in Ukraine increased dramatically (up to 300% of the initial rates). We exploit variation in tariffs over time and across customers to estimate the price elasticity of electricity demand using a panel dataset with monthly meter readings from households in Uzhhorod in Ukraine. The price elasticity of electricity demand is -0.2 to -0.5, with the bulk of our estimates around -0.3. The elasticity becomes up to 50% more pronounced over the first three months since prices change. We find only limited evidence that persons who are attentive about their consumption levels, their bills, or the tariffs are more responsive to the price changes.



From Residential Energy Demand to Fuel Poverty: Income-induced Non-linearities in the Reactions of Households to Energy Price Fluctuations

Dorothee Charlier and Sondes Kahouli

Year: 2019
Volume: Volume 40
Number: Number 2
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.40.2.dcha
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Abstract:
The residential energy demand is growing steadily and the trend is expected to continue in the near future. At the same time, under the impulse of economic crises and environmental and energy policies, many households have experienced reductions in real income and higher energy prices. In the residential sector, the number of fuel-poor households is thus expected to rise. A better understanding of the determinants of residential energy demand, in particular of the role of income and the sensitivity of households to changes in energy prices, is crucial in the context of recurrent debates on energy efficiency and fuel poverty. We propose a panel threshold regression (PTR) model to empirically test the sensitivity of French households to energy price fluctuations - as measured by the elasticity of residential heating energy prices - and to analyze the overlap between their income and fuel poverty profiles. The PTR model allows to test for the non-linear effect of income on the reactions of households to fluctuations in energy prices. Thus, it can identify specific regimes differing by their level of estimated price elasticities. Each regime represents an elasticity-homogeneous group of households. The number of these regimes is determined based on an endogenously PTR-fixed income threshold. Thereafter, we analyze the composition of the regimes (i.e. groups) to locate the dominant proportion of fuel-poor households and analyse their monetary poverty characteristics. Results show that, depending on the income level, we can identify two groups of households that react differently to residential energy price fluctuations and that fuel-poor households belong mostly to the group of households with the highest elasticity. By extension, results also show that income poverty does not necessarily mean fuel poverty. In terms of public policy, we suggest focusing on income heterogeneity by considering different groups of households separately when defining energy efficiency measures. We also suggest paying particular attention to targeting fuel-poor households by examining the overlap between fuel and income poverty.



Switching on Electricity Demand Response: Evidence for German Households

Manuel Frondel and Gerhard Kussel

Year: 2019
Volume: Volume 40
Number: Number 5
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.40.5.mfro
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Abstract:
Empirical evidence on households' awareness of electricity prices and potentially divergent demand responses to price changes conditional on price knowledge is scant. Using panel data originating from Germany's Residential Energy Consumption Survey (GRECS), we fill this void by employing an instrumental-variable (IV) approach to cope with the endogeneity of the consumers'tariff choice. By additionally exploiting information on the households'knowledge about power prices, we combine the IV approach with an Endogenous Switching Regression Model to estimate price elasticities for two groups of households, finding that only those households that are informed about prices are sensitive to price changes, whereas the electricity demand of uninformed households is entirely price-inelastic. Based on these results, to curb the electricity consumption of the household sector and its environmental impact, we suggest implementing low-cost information measures on a large scale, such as improving the transparency of tariffs, thereby increasing the saliency of prices.




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