Price-Level Dispersion versus Inflation-Rate Dispersion: Evidence from Three Countries

David Fielding, Christopher Hajzler & James MacGee
Inflation can affect both the dispersion of commodity-specific price levels across locations (relative price variability, RPV) and the dispersion of inflation rates (relative inflation variability, RIV). Some menu-cost models and models of consumer search suggest that the RIV-inflation relationship could differ from the RPV-inflation relationship. However, most empirical studies examine only RIV, finding that RIV is high when inflation is high. We examine city-level retail price data from Japan, Canada and Nigeria, and find that...
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