Obesity and Price Sensitivity at the Supermarket

20 Pages Posted: 7 Oct 2009

See all articles by Neil Gandal

Neil Gandal

Berglas School of Economics, Tel Aviv University; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Anastasia Shabelansky

Tel Aviv University - Department of Public Policy

Date Written: September 2009

Abstract

In this paper, we employ a rich data set at the individual level in order to examine which factors are most highly correlated with obesity. Our main result is that, even after controlling for income levels and other factors, we find that high 'price-sensitivity' for food products is associated with high obesity rates. We find that a woman who stated that prices were 'not important at all' when purchasing food products had a Body Mass Index (BMI) that was 1.3 units below those who stated that price was 'very important.' This suggests that the price effect is not trivial and obesity is a problem that is not limited to those with low income levels. A 1.3 unit reduction in the BMI would move approximately 28% of women who are in the 'overweight' category to the 'normal weight' category and 25% of women who are in the 'obese' category to the 'overweight' category.

Keywords: Obesity, Price Sensitivity

JEL Classification: D12, I18

Suggested Citation

Gandal, Neil and Shabelansky, Anastasia, Obesity and Price Sensitivity at the Supermarket (September 2009). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP7443. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1484476

Neil Gandal (Contact Author)

Berglas School of Economics, Tel Aviv University ( email )

Tel Aviv University
Tel Aviv 69978
Israel
+972 3 640 9907 (Phone)
+972 3 640 9908 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.neilgandal.com/

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Anastasia Shabelansky

Tel Aviv University - Department of Public Policy ( email )

Tel Aviv
Israel

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