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Asymmetric Pass-Through in U.S. Gasoline Prices

Matthew Chesnes

Federal Trade Commission; Johns Hopkins University

September 11, 2012

U.S. Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Economics Working Paper No. 302

This paper presents new evidence of asymmetric pass-through, the notion that upward cost shocks are passed through faster than downward cost shocks, in U.S. gasoline prices. Much of the extant literature comes to seemingly contradictory conclusions about the existence of an asymmetry, though the differences may be due to different aggregation (both over time and geographic markets) and the use of different price series including crude oil, wholesale, and retail gasoline prices. I utilize a large and detailed dataset to determine where evidence of a pass-through asymmetry exists, and how it depends on the aggregation and price series chosen by the researcher. Using the error correction model, I find evidence of pass-through asymmetry in the response of daily and weekly retail prices to wholesale rack price changes, though the magnitude varies by geographic market. On average, retail prices rise three to four times as fast as they fall.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 47

Keywords: Gasoline Prices, Pass-Through

JEL Classification: L00, L71, L11

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Date posted: June 25, 2010 ; Last revised: September 11, 2012

Suggested Citation

Chesnes, Matthew, Asymmetric Pass-Through in U.S. Gasoline Prices (September 11, 2012). U.S. Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Economics Working Paper No. 302. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1629340 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1629340

Contact Information

Matthew William Chesnes (Contact Author)
Federal Trade Commission ( email )
600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20580
United States
2023263083 (Phone)
HOME PAGE: http://www.chesnes.com
Johns Hopkins University ( email )
Baltimore, MD 20036-1984
United States
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