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Monday, November 07, 2005

Price Elasticity of Supply and the Web

One of the most difficult things about teaching microeconomics has been, for me, the difficulty in finding actual empirical estimates of price elasticity of supply. There are literally hundreds of estimates of price elasticity of demand, quite a few estimates of income elasticity of demand, and even a fairly large number (courtesy of the USDA) of estimates of cross-price elasticities of demand. But price elasticity of supply estimates have remained difficule to find.

But now there's the web. This morning, I needed to find some estimates, and in about 10 mminutes on the web, and thanks to Google, I found the following:

Transit in Sweden: 0.44 to 0.64.
Labor in South Africa: 0.35 to 1.75.
Beef in
.....Zimbabwe: ≈ 2.0
.....Brazil: 0.11 to 0.56.
.....Argentina: 0.67 to 0.96
.....Colombia: 0.56 to 1.20
Corn, short-run, US: 0.96.
Crude petroleum, long-run: 2.5.
Housing, long-run:
.....Dallas: 38.6
.....Atlanta: 28.8
.....Indianapolis: 14.6
..... St. Louis: 8.1
.....Akron: 4.4
.....San Francisco: 2.4
.....New Orleans: 0.9
.....Toledo: -0.3
.....Orlando: -6.3
Uranium: 2.3 to 3.3.
Recycled aluminum: ≈ 0.5.
Oysters: 1.64 to 2.00.
Retail store space: ≈ 3.2
Natural gas (short-run): ≈ 0.5.

There's even interesting stuff to talk about--like the price elasticities of supply for housing in Toledo and in Orlando

The web is wonderful.


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