NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Daniel Sperling

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Working Papers

September 2006Evidence of a Shift in the Short-Run Price Elasticity of Gasoline Demand
with Jonathan E. Hughes, Christopher R. Knittel: w12530
Understanding the sensitivity of gasoline demand to changes in prices and income has important implications for policies related to climate change, optimal taxation and national security, to name only a few. While the short-run price and income elasticities of gasoline demand in the United States have been studied extensively, the vast majority of these studies focus on consumer behavior in the 1970s and 1980s. There are a number of reasons to believe that current demand elasticities differ from these previous periods, as transportation analysts have hypothesized that behavioral and structural factors over the past several decades have changed the responsiveness of U.S. consumers to changes in gasoline prices. In this paper, we compare the price and income elasticities of gasoline demand ...

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