FEEM working papers "Note di lavoro" series
2005 .075

Asymmetric Error Correction Models for the Oil-Gasoline Price Relationship


Authors: Matteo Manera, Margherita Grasso
Series: Energy: Resources and Markets
Editor: Carlo Carraro
Type: Journal
Keywords: Oil prices,Gasoline prices,Asymmetries,Error correction models
JEL n.: C22,D40,Q40
JEL: Energy Policy
Pages: Vol. 35, Issue 1, pp. 156-177
Date: 01/2007

Abstract

The existing literature on price asymmetries does not systematically investigate the sensitivity of the empirical results to the choice of a particular econometric specification. This paper fills this gap by providing a detailed comparison of the three most popular models designed to describe asymmetric price behaviour, namely asymmetric ECM, autoregressive threshold ECM and ECM with threshold cointegration. Each model is estimated on a common monthly dataset for the gasoline markets of France, Germany, Italy, Spain and UK over the period 1985-2003. All models are able to capture the temporal delay in the reaction of retail prices to changes in spot gasoline and crude oil prices, as well as some evidence of asymmetric behaviour. However, the type of market and the number of countries which are characterized by asymmetric oil-gasoline price relations vary across models. The asymmetric ECM yields some evidence of asymmetry for all countries, mainly at the distribution stage. The threshold ECM strongly rejects the null hypothesis of symmetric price behaviour, particularly in the case of France and Germany. Finally, the ECM with threshold cointegration finds long-run asymmetry for each country in the reaction of retail prices to oil price changes.

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