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東京大学公共政策大学院 | GraSPP / Graduate School of Public Policy | The university of Tokyo

Professors Toshiaki Iizuka and Hitoshi Shigeoka’s co-authored paper “Asymmetric Demand Response when Prices Increase and Decrease: The Case of Child Healthcare” was accepted in Review of Economics and Statistics September 24, 2021

Faculty news

Professors Toshiaki Iizuka and Hitoshi Shigeoka’s co-authored paper entitled”Asymmetric Demand Response when Prices Increase and Decrease: The Case of Child Healthcare” was accepted in the Review of Economics and Statistics.

https://direct.mit.edu/rest/article/doi/10.1162/rest_a_01110/107395/Asymmetric-Demand-Response-When-Prices-Increase

This study tests whether demand responds symmetrically to price increases and decreases—a seemingly obvious proposition under conventional demand theory that has not been rigorously tested. Exploiting the rapid expansion in Japanese municipal subsidies for child healthcare in a difference-in-differences framework, we find evidence against conventional demand theory: when coinsurance, our price measure, increases from 0% to 30%, the demand response is more than twice that to a price decrease from 30% to 0%. This result indicates that while economists and policymakers pay little attention, price change direction matters and should be incorporated into welfare analysis.