The Deadweight Loss of Christmas - Reply

CEGE - Discussion Papers, No. 361, December 2018

30 Pages Posted: 16 Jan 2019

See all articles by Laura Birg

Laura Birg

University of Goettingen (Göttingen)

Simon Pommeranz


Date Written: December 24, 2018


In this paper, we study the welfare effects of Christmas presents with a focus on the effect of presents for gift-givers. Based on a survey among students at the University of Göttingen, Germany, we find that the vast majority of gift-givers prefers in-kind gifts compared to gifts of money. The average present in our survey has a price of 36 Euro and results in a "giver's surplus" of 10 Euro. This indicates a welfare gain of approximately 143% from the average giver's perspective. The welfare gain for presents to friends and partners is lower than for presents to close family members. Our empirical analysis shows a negative effect of a present's price on the welfare gain for gift-givers.

Keywords: presents, gift-giving, Christmas, welfare

JEL Classification: D61, D64, H42, Z1

Suggested Citation

Birg, Laura and Pommeranz, Simon, The Deadweight Loss of Christmas - Reply (December 24, 2018). CEGE - Discussion Papers, No. 361, December 2018, Available at SSRN: or

Laura Birg (Contact Author)

University of Goettingen (Göttingen) ( email )

Platz der Goettinger Sieben 3
Goettingen, D-37073
+49 551 39 19686 (Phone)

Simon Pommeranz

Independent ( email )

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics