Consumer Search in Retail Gasoline Markets

11 Pages Posted: 22 Apr 2014 Last revised: 16 Mar 2015

See all articles by David P. Byrne

David P. Byrne

University of Melbourne

Nicolas de Roos

University of Liverpool; University of Sydney

Date Written: March 11, 2015


This paper develops direct tests for search behavior in retail gasoline markets. We exploit a unique market-level dataset that allows us to directly measure search intensity with daily web traffic data from a gasoline price reporting website and perfectly measure daily changes in price levels and dispersion. Our simple yet powerful tests provide strong evidence of both cross-sectional and intertemporal price search.

Keywords: search, price dispersion, retail gasoline

JEL Classification: D8, L8

Suggested Citation

Byrne, David P. and de Roos, Nicolas, Consumer Search in Retail Gasoline Markets (March 11, 2015). Available at SSRN: or

David P. Byrne (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne ( email )

Level 4
111 Barry Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3010


Nicolas De Roos

University of Liverpool ( email )

Chatham Street
Brownlow Hill
Liverpool, L69 7ZA
United Kingdom

University of Sydney ( email )

University of Sydney
Sydney NSW 2006

Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics