nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2011‒07‒02
23 papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
University of Verona

  1. Food Crises and Gender Inequality By Bina Agarwal
  2. Institutional credit and agricultural production nexus By Sial, Maqbool Hussain; Awan , Masood Sarwar; Waqas, Muhammad
  3. Modeling Directions of Technical Change in Agricultural Sector. By Orachos Napasintuwong Artachinda;
  4. Revenue Protection for Organic Producers: Too Much or Too Little By Singerman, Ariel; Hart, Chad E.; Lence, Sergio H.
  5. Adjusting the labor supply to mitigate violent shocks : evidence from rural Colombia By Fernandez, Manuel; Ibanez, Ana Maria; Pena, Ximena
  6. Agritourism and Direct Agricultural Marketing in Washington State: An Industry Profile By Gregmar Galinato; Suzette Galinato; Hayley Chouinard; Mykel Taylor; Phil Wandschneider
  7. A stochastic programming model of the sowing plan with crop succession restrictions By Jitka Janová
  8. Projected impacts of salinity on dryland property values in South West Australia By Ward, Michael; Dent, Jared
  9. Strategic Analysis of the U.S. Quarter Horse Industry, Emphasizing California By Phillips, Jon C.; Hays, Lauren L.
  10. Role of Institutional Credit on Agricultural Production: A Time Series Analysis of Pakistan By Sial, Maqbool Hussain; Awan, Masood Sarwar; Waqas, Muhammad
  11. Revegetation of Regent Honeyeater habitat in the Capertee Valley: a Cost-Benefit Analysis By Greyling, Tertius; Bennett, Jeff
  12. Efficiency Tests of the Agricultural Futures Exchange of Thailand: A Case of White Rice 5%. By Suphansa Yuenyoung; Apichat Daloonpate
  13. Land use planning: the impact on retail productivity By Paul Cheshire; Christian Hilber; Ioannis Kaplanis
  14. The end of plantation? Coffee and land inequality in early twentieth century São Paulo By Colistete, Renato P.; Lamounier, Maria Lucia
  15. Assessing community values for reducing agricultural emissions to improve water quality and protect coral health in the Great Barrier Reef By Windle, Jill; Rolfe, John
  16. Competition Leverage: How the Demand Side Affects Optimal Risk Adjustment By Bijlsma, M.; Boone, J.; Zwart, G.
  17. Willingness-to-pay for Local Milk-based Dairy Product in Senegal By Melanie Lefevre
  18. The Dynamics of Energy-Grain Prices with Open Interest By Shawkat Hammoudeh; Soodabeh Sarafrazi; Chia-Lin Chang; Michael McAleer
  19. Endogenous R&D Investment and Market Structure: A Case Study of the Agricultural Biotechnology Industry By Anderson, Benjamin; Sheldon, Ian
  20. The economics of transmission constraints on wind farms: some evidence from South Australia By Boerema, Nicholas; MacGill, Ian
  21. Willingness to pay for recycling food waste in the Brisbane Region By Gillespie, Robert; Bennett, Jeff
  22. Is the Euro-Area Core Price Index Really More Persistent than the Food and Energy Price Indexes? By José Manuel Belbute
  23. Raising the Barcode Scanner: Technology and Productivity in the Retail Sector By Emek Basker

  1. By: Bina Agarwal
    Abstract: This paper examines the current food crises, the projected effect of climate change, the vulnerabilities created by regional concentrations of food production, imports and exports, and the significant role of women as food producers, consumers and family food managers. Bridging productivity differentials between male and female farmers, by helping women overcome production constraints, would significantly increase agricultural output. This becomes an imperative, given the feminization of agriculture. Institutionally, a group approach to farming would help women and other small holders enhance their access to land and inputs, benefit from economies of scale, and increase their bargaining power economically and socially.
    Keywords: food crises, food security, gender inequality, women farmers, agricultural productivity, gendered constraints, and group farming
    JEL: J16 J43 Q13 Q15 Q18
    Date: 2011–06
  2. By: Sial, Maqbool Hussain; Awan , Masood Sarwar; Waqas, Muhammad
    Abstract: Credit plays an important role in the development of agriculture sector. It capitalizes farmers to adopt new technologies. It helps smooth consumption by providing Working capital and reduces poverty in the process. Both formal and informal lenders are active in rural credit market of Pakistan. There is a need to highlight the relationship between institutional agricultural credit and agricultural production. Time series data for the period of 1973-2009 was used. The study utilized Johansen and Juselius (JJ) cointegration approach and Granger causality test to explore the long-run equilibrium relationship and the possible direction of causality between availability of institutional agricultural credit, labor force availability, cropping intensity, water availability and agricultural production. Result shows the long run relationship among variables. Granger causality test shows the uni-directional causality among institutional agricultural credit and agricultural production and among water availability and agricultural production. The bi-directional causality was found among availability of labor force & cropping intensity and among water availability & cropping intensity.
    Keywords: Institutional credit; Agricultural credit; Pakistan
    JEL: O1 G0 Q58 A11
    Date: 2011
  3. By: Orachos Napasintuwong Artachinda (Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics,Faculty of Economics,Kasetsart University,Thailand);
    Keywords: directed technical change, induced innovation
    JEL: O31 O33
    Date: 2011–06
  4. By: Singerman, Ariel; Hart, Chad E.; Lence, Sergio H.
    Abstract: A framework is developed to examine the 2011 pilot program established by the Risk Management Agency (RMA) to insure organic crops. Given that for insurance purposes RMA links organic crop prices to their conventional counterparts by a fixed percentage, we calibrate our model to reflect the organic and conventional corn markets to illustrate the impacts that such pricing potentially has on Revenue Protection coverage under different scenarios. Findings indicate that at the 75% nominal coverage level, RMA’s fixed price factor implies an effective coverage ranging from 45 to 106% depending on what the organic to conventional market price ratio is; resulting, therefore, in lower and higher indemnities compared to those organic producers should get when considering their idiosyncratic revenue distribution.
    Keywords: crop insurance; organic production; revenue protection
    Date: 2011–06–22
  5. By: Fernandez, Manuel; Ibanez, Ana Maria; Pena, Ximena
    Abstract: This paper studies the use of labor markets to mitigate the impact of violent shocks on households in rural areas in Colombia. It examines changes in the labor supply from on-farm to off-farm labor as a means of coping with the violent shock and the ensuing redistribution of time within households. It identifies the heterogeneous response by gender. Because the incidence of violent shocks is not exogenous, the analysis uses instrumental variables that capture several dimensions of the cost of exercising terror. As a response to the violent shocks, households decrease the time spent on on-farm work and increase their supply of labor to off-farm activities (non-agricultural ones). Men carry the bulk of the adjustment in the use of time inasmuch as they supply the most hours to off-farm non-agricultural work and formal labor markets. Labor markets do not fully absorb the additional labor supply. Women in particular are unable to find jobs in formal labor markets and men have increased time dedicated to leisure and household chores. Additional off-farm supply does not fully cover the decrease in consumption. The results suggest that in rural Colombia, labor markets are a limited alternative for coping with violent shocks. Thus, policies in conflict-affected countries should go beyond short-term relief and aim at preventing labor markets from collapsing and at supporting the recovery of agricultural production.
    Keywords: Labor Policies,Rural Poverty Reduction,Housing&Human Habitats,Labor Markets,Regional Economic Development
    Date: 2011–06–01
  6. By: Gregmar Galinato; Suzette Galinato; Hayley Chouinard; Mykel Taylor; Phil Wandschneider (School of Economic Sciences, Washington State University)
    Abstract: The objective of this report is to take stock of the activities, motivations, impacts and challenges faced by the farms in Washington as they relate to agritourism and direct marketing. We characterize the agritourism entrepreneurship and direct marketing activities in different counties of the State through a direct survey of industry respondents. Also, we determine the extent to which Washington’s agritourism and direct marketing industry attracts local and foreign tourists. We find that the direct marketing industry in the State is well established but the agritourism activities are still developing. Most farms that conduct agritourism are small farms (with less than $250,000 of total sales), whereas direct marketing farms vary in size and include some larger farms in terms of sales. The primary reasons for operating are to earn additional income and educate the local populace regarding agricultural and local activities which illustrates economic and altruistic motives for farmers. Respondents feel that the main obstacles to the industry are State laws and regulations and concerns about liability. Farm operators in the industry rely on social networks to enhance production capacity as well as help increase demand for their product or service. Development of social networks may help overcome current and future obstacles of farms leading to overall growth of the industry.
    Keywords: agritourism, direct agricultural marketing, Washington State
    JEL: Q12 Q13
    Date: 2010–10
  7. By: Jitka Janová (Department of Statistics and Operational Research, FBE MENDELU in Brno)
    Abstract: A user-friendly decision support model for agricultural production planning in the Czech Republic is developed covering both the randomness of harvest parameters entering the decision problem and the complex crop succession requirements. The methods of stochastic programming are applied and the linear re-sowing constraints are developed, described in detail and incorporated in such a way that the model can be approached by software tools commonly available at farms. The model abilities are demonstrated in the particular case of production planning decision making in the South Moravian farm. The re-sowing constraints themselves are verified with respect to covering the local crop succession requirements and the validation of the model as a whole is performed using a Monte Carlo simulation.
    Keywords: stochastic programming, crop rotation, crop plan, agriculture optimization
    JEL: C44 C61 Q15
    Date: 2011–06
  8. By: Ward, Michael; Dent, Jared
    Abstract: The goal of this analysis is to predict the impacts of salinity on property values in the unirrigated, predominately cropping land in the south-west agricultural region of Western Australia. The method applied is statistical analysis of the relationship between salinity and property values in data from the recent past. Estimates suggest that if we can avoid salinisation of salt free cropping land holding other factors constant, we can avoid a reduction in land values of anywhere between 30% and 95%. In terms of dollar values and relative to the average land value per hectare in this study of approximately $1500, that amounts to savings of between $450 and $1425 per hectare.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2010–12
  9. By: Phillips, Jon C.; Hays, Lauren L.
    Abstract: The American Quarter Horse is the most popular breed of horse in California, as well as nationwide. This breed has shaped agricultural history and has had a major impact on the agricultural economy because. The objective of this report is to provide strategic information about the U.S. quarter horse industry, with an emphasis on California. This report provides information on the following topics: statistics of the industry, quarter horse associations, trends in the industry, prevailing marketing practices, innovative/successful marketing practices, success factors for horse businesses, and characterization of related and supporting industries. The primary contribution of the report is a diagram and description of the horse industry supply chain. The varying levels of entry barriers and varying degrees of attractiveness to potential entrants are given for many types of businesses in the horse industry.
    Keywords: American Quarter Horse, associations, breeder, California, entry barriers, equine, horse industry, industry trends, livestock, marketing practices, registry, related and supporting industries, supply chain, success factors, trainer, Agribusiness, Livestock Production/Industries,
    Date: 2011–04–06
  10. By: Sial, Maqbool Hussain; Awan, Masood Sarwar; Waqas, Muhammad
    Abstract: In our predominant and cash-strapped agrarian sector, adequate credit provision is a definite buttress to implant technological advancements, achieve technical efficiency and hire efficient inputs to uplift agriculture output/income collectively and eradicate poverty eventually. In the midst of beleaguered informal credit sector and recent spurt in banking services in last decade diverted the attention to envisage the formal sector’s optimum potential. In this backdrop, this study is going to explore the role of institutional credit in agricultural production using the time series data for the period of 1972 to 2008. Cobb-Douglas production function is estimated using OLS and all the variables are transformed to per cultivated hectare. Results show that agricultural credit, availability of water, cropping intensity and agricultural labor force are positively significantly related to agricultural production.
    Keywords: Agricultural Credit; Time series analysis; Pakistan
    JEL: G38 G21
    Date: 2011
  11. By: Greyling, Tertius; Bennett, Jeff
    Abstract: This study considers the costs and benefit of the Regent Honeyeater Project in the Capertee Valley over the past 10 years. The benefits are estimated using choice modelling and the costs are based on project expenditure and forgone agricultural production. A comparison of the benefits and costs yields a benefit-cost ratio (BCR) of 4.45, which implies that the benefits outweigh the costs. However, variation in the underlying assumptions reveal significant sensitivity to the uncertainty associated with the maturation of native tree plantings and the successful establishment of a significant population of birds within the native vegetation. The Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA) is dominated by the benefit derived from protection of the native species (i.e. the Regent Honeyeater) which in turn depends on these two uncertainties. By expanding the total area of land being revegetated and reducing the fragmentation amongst individual plantings these uncertainties can be reduced. This should deliver larger benefits and further improve the BCR.
    Keywords: Cost-benefit analysis, Benefit-cost ratio, Choice modelling, Regent Honeyeater, Capertee Valley, Environmental Economics and Policy, Land Economics/Use,
    Date: 2010–12
  12. By: Suphansa Yuenyoung; Apichat Daloonpate (Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics,Faculty of Economics,Kasetsart University,Thailand)
    Keywords: market efficiency,AFET,cointegration,white rice 5%
    JEL: D43
    Date: 2011–07
  13. By: Paul Cheshire; Christian Hilber; Ioannis Kaplanis
    Abstract: The restrictions that planning policies impose on retail development have significantly reduced the productivity of supermarkets, according to Paul Cheshire and colleagues.
    Keywords: Land use regulation, regulatory costs, firm productivity, retail
    JEL: D2 L51 L81 R32
    Date: 2011–06
  14. By: Colistete, Renato P.; Lamounier, Maria Lucia
    Abstract: This paper examines the concentration of land ownership in the leading coffee export region in the early twentieth century, the northeast area of the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Critics of the so-called plantationist perspective have rejected the classic view that large estates shaped colonial and nineteenth century Brazilian economy and society, arguing instead for a major role of small and medium-sized landholdings. We describe the size distribution of landholdings and estimate alternative measures of land concentration based on a detailed agricultural census of the state of São Paulo. We find that, despite variation across municipalities, large farms and latifundia controlled most of the productive resources in northeast São Paulo, resulting in high levels of inequality when compared to those of other agrarian societies in the past. These results contrast with the view of the critics of classic historiography and suggest that the large estate and high concentration of wealth were remarkable features at least in the most important coffee region in Brazil during the early twentieth century.
    Keywords: Land inequality; coffee plantations; Gini index; Generalized Entropy indexes; São Paulo; Brazil
    JEL: O18 Q15 O13 R14 N56
    Date: 2011–05–05
  15. By: Windle, Jill; Rolfe, John
    Abstract: Key policy issues relating to protection of the Great Barrier Reef from pollutants generated by agriculture are to identify when measures to improve water quality generate benefits to society that outweigh the costs of reducing pollutants. The research reported in this paper makes a key contribution in several key ways. First, it uses the improved science understanding about the links between management changes and reef health to bring together the analysis of costs and benefits of marginal changes, helping to demonstrate the appropriate way of addressing policy questions relating to reef protection. Second, it uses the scientific relationships to frame a choice experiment to value the benefits of improved reef health, and links improvements explicitly to changes in âwater quality unitsâ. Third, the research demonstrates how protection values are consistent across a broader population, with some limited evidence of distance effects. Fourth, the information on marginal costs and benefits that are reported provide policy makers with key information to help improve management decisions. The results indicate that while there is potential for water quality improvements to generate net benefits, high cost water quality improvements are generally uneconomic. One implication for policy makers is that cost thresholds for key pollutants should be set to avoid more expensive water quality proposals being selected
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2010–11
  16. By: Bijlsma, M.; Boone, J.; Zwart, G. (Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research)
    Abstract: We study optimal risk adjustment in imperfectly competitive health insurance markets when high-risk consumers are less likely to switch insurer than low-risk consumers. First, we find that insurers still have an incentive to select even if risk adjustment perfectly corrects for cost differences among consumers. Consequently, the outcome is not efficient even if cost differences are fully compensated. To achieve first best, risk adjustment should overcompensate for serving high-risk agents to take into account the difference in mark- ups among the two types. Second, the difference in switching behavior creates a trade off between efficiency and consumer welfare. Reducing the difference in risk adjustment subsidies to high and low types increases consumer welfare by leveraging competition from the elastic low-risk market to the less elastic high-risk market. Finally, mandatory pooling can increase consumer surplus even further, at the cost of efficiency.
    Keywords: health insurance;risk adjustment;imperfect competition;leverage
    JEL: I11 I18 G22 L13
    Date: 2011
  17. By: Melanie Lefevre
    Abstract: This paper aims to evaluate Senegalese consumers' willingness-to-pay (WTP) for local fresh milk-based products, in opposition to the ones produced with imported powder. Using data from a choice-based-conjoint analysis conducted on 400 households in the re- gion of Dakar, we evaluate the premium that consumers are willing to pay for fresh raw material (rather than powder) in the composition of sour milk. Based on an Ordered Probit Model, the results show evidence for a positive WTP for fresh raw material, which may be seen as a strong indication of preference for local products. This WTP greatly depends on the characteristics of the households. Wealthier house- holds are willing to pay more than the medium households, while big households are ready to pay much less than the base category ones. Obviously, some niche markets exist, that producers may target to sell the local milk-based dairy products. However, more infor- mation has to be provided about the composition of dairy products, as consumers are not currently able to distinguish both types of raw material, even if they are willing to pay more for one of them.
    Date: 2011
  18. By: Shawkat Hammoudeh (Lebow College of Business, Drexel University, USA); Soodabeh Sarafrazi (Lebow College of Business, Drexel University, USA); Chia-Lin Chang (Department of Applied Economics, Department of Finance, National Chung Hsing University Taichung, Taiwan.); Michael McAleer (Econometrisch Instituut (Econometric Institute), Faculteit der Economische Wetenschappen (Erasmus School of Economics), Erasmus Universiteit, Tinbergen Instituut (Tinbergen Institute).)
    Abstract: This paper examines the short- and long-run daily relationships for a grain-energy nexus that includes the prices of corn, crude oil, ethanol, gasoline, soybeans, and sugar, and their open interest. The empirical results demonstrate the presence of these relationships in this nexus, and underscore the importance of ethanol and soybeans in all these relationships. In particular, ethanol and be considered as a catalyst in this nexus because of its significance as a loading factor, a long-run error corrector and a short-run adjuster. Ethanol leads all commodities in the price discovery process in the long run. The negative cross-price open interest effects suggest that there is a money outflow from all commodities in response to increases in open interest positions in the corn futures markets, indicating that active arbitrage activity takes place in those markets. On the other hand, an increase in the soybean open interest contributes to fund inflows in the corn futures market and the other futures markets, leading to more speculative activities in these markets. In connection with open interest, the ethanol market fails because of its thin market. Finally, it is interesting to note that the long-run equilibrium (cointegrating relationship), speeds of adjustment and open interest across markets have strengthened significantly during the 2009-2011 economic recovery period, compared with the full and 2007-2009 Great Recession periods.
    Keywords: Energy-grain price nexus, open interest, futures prices, ethanol, crude oil, gasoline, corn, soybean, sugar, arbitrage, speculation.
    JEL: E43 Q11 Q13
    Date: 2011
  19. By: Anderson, Benjamin; Sheldon, Ian
    Abstract: Over the past three decades, the agricultural biotechnology sector has been characterized by rapid innovation, market consolidation, and a more exhaustive definition of property rights. The industry attributes consistently identified by the literature and important to this analysis include: (i) endogenous sunk costs in the form of expenditures on R&D; (ii) seed and agricultural chemical technologies that potentially act as complements within firms and substitutes across firms; and (iii) property rights governing plant and seed varieties that have become more clearly defined since the 1970s. This paper adds to the stylized facts of the agricultural biotechnology industry to include the ability of firms to license technology, a phenomenon observed only recently in the market as licensing was previously precluded by high transactions costs and âanti-stackingâ provisions. We extend Suttonâs theoretical framework of endogenous sunk costs and market structure to incorporate the ability of firms to license technology under well-defined property rights, an observed characteristic not captured in previous analyses of the sector. Our model implies that technology licensing leads to lower levels of industry concentration then what would be found under Suttonâs model, but that industry concentration remains bounded away from perfect competition as market size becomes large.
    Keywords: licensing, market structure, R&D, agricultural biotechnology, Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies, L22, L24, Q16,
    Date: 2011
  20. By: Boerema, Nicholas; MacGill, Ian
    Abstract: The impacts of transmission congestion and network investment on the development of the Australian wind energy industry have received growing attention from wind farm developers as well as relevant policy stakeholders such as the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC). There are many potential wind farm sites across the country with excellent wind regimes yet only limited transmission capacity. At least one wind farm in South Australia has spent a period following construction where its output was curtailed by transmission constraints (NEMMCO, 2009). Current market rules do not guarantee dispatch to an existing wind farm as more wind generation connects to the same transmission. Given the expense of transmission network extension and augmentation, there are interesting questions of what economic impacts such constraints might have for wind farm operators. This paper examines this issue in the context of the South Australian region of the Australian National Electricity Market (NEM). The State currently hosts almost half of total Australian wind generation capacity and has significant transmission capacity limitations for further development. Half hour wholesale electricity spot prices were used along with generation data from nine South Australian wind farms over the 2008-9 and 2009-10 financial years to assess the potential impact that transmission constraints might have had on wind farm revenue. Results showed that a number of the wind farms would have suffered only very limited revenue reductions from having significantly greater wind farm capacity than the rating of their transmission connection to the NEM. Importantly, some wind farms could be limited to a maximum power output of half their rated capacity and still achieve higher capacity factors then other already existing unconstrained wind farms. The key reasons for this are that wind farms do not generate at rated capacity for a great deal of the time over the year, periods of high wind generation appear to be associated with lower wholesale prices and there is significant variance between the wind farms capacity factors. Our findings suggest that there may be circumstances where wind farm developers might benefit from installing more wind turbines than the capacity of their transmission connection.
    Keywords: Integration, market price, NEM, South Australia, Wind, Environmental Economics and Policy, Farm Management, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2010–09
  21. By: Gillespie, Robert; Bennett, Jeff
    Abstract: Kerbside recycling in Australia has focused on paper, cardboard, plastics and bottles and in some areas green waste. Another area for potential kerbside recycling is organic waste. This study uses a dichotomous choice contingent valuation format with follow-up open-ended willingness to pay question to estimate the household willingness to pay for the introduction of a kerbside recycling scheme for kitchen waste. Two provision rules were used. The first sample split contained a majority decision rule while the second sample split contained a provision rule where participation is voluntary. Households across the Brisbane statistical sub-division currently pay in the order of $250 per annum for their kerbside waste collection scheme. This study indicates that on average Brisbane households would be WTP an additional $32 to $35 per year for a general waste bin where food waste is split from general waste. There was no significant difference in results between sample splits with majority or voluntary provision rules. Whether the provision of a food waste recycling scheme is economically efficient requires a consideration of all the potential costs and benefits. Other relevant costs and benefits for inclusion in a benefit cost analysis would include those associated with bin replacement, any additional collection and transport costs, composting costs, revenues from compost sales and avoided landfill costs. If a compulsory food waste recycling scheme could be provided to all households for less than $32 to $35 per household per annum then the benefits of the scheme would exceed the costs and would be considered to be economically efficient and desirable from a community welfare perspective. Given the difficulties of estimating precise WTP values from dichotomous choice data, any BCA of a compulsory scheme incorporating the results of this study should undertake sensitivity testing that includes the range of values reported including dichotomous choice and open-ended means to determine the robustness of BCA results to variations in the welfare estimate. Notwithstanding, the results of any BCA, decision-makers also need to be cognisant of the high proportion of respondents who did not support a kerbside food waste recycling scheme. The data from the study could also be used to undertake a BCA of a voluntary scheme.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2011–03
  22. By: José Manuel Belbute (Departamento de Economia, CEFAGE-UE, Universidade de Évora)
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to measure the degree of persistence of the overall, core, food and energy Harmonized Indexes of Consumer Prices for the European Monetary Zone (HICP-EAs) and to identify its implications for decision-making in the private sector and in public policy. Using a non-parametric approach, our results demonstrate the presence of a statistically significant level of persistence in four HICP-EAs: headline, core, food and energy. Moreover, contrary to popular belief, the core index does not reflect permanent price changes. We also find evidence that the food and energy price indexes are more volatile and more persistent than the other two price indexes. Our results also show a reduction in persistence for both the headline and the core price indexes after the implementation of the single monetary policy, but not for food and energy. These results have important implications for both the private sector and for policymakers who use the core as a reference price index for their decision-making because the use of this index can lead to an erroneous perception of price movements.
    Keywords: Harmonized Index of Consumption Prices, Core Inflation, Euro Area, Persistence.
    JEL: C14 C22 E31 E52
    Date: 2011
  23. By: Emek Basker
    Abstract: Barcode scanners were introduced in the 1970s as a way to reduce labor costs in stores, particularly at checkout. This paper is the first to estimate their effect on productivity. I use store-level data from the 1972, 1977, and 1982 Census of Retail Trade, matched to data on store scanner installations, to estimate scanners’ effect on labor productivity. I find that early scanners increased a store’s labor productivity, on average, by approximately 4.5 percent in the first few years, with a larger effect in stores carrying more packaged products likely to bear barcodes. Setup costs significantly offset the short-run productivity effect.
    Keywords: Barcode scanners, Retail, Supermarkets, Technology, Productivity
    JEL: L81 O33
    Date: 2011–05

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