NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Stephanie G. Johnson

Jones Graduate School of Business
Rice University
6100 Main Street
Houston, TX 77005

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: Rice University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

August 2020Financial Returns to Household Inventory Management
with Scott R. Baker, Lorenz Kueng: w27740
Households tend to hold substantial amounts of non-financial assets in the form of inventory. Households can obtain significant financial returns from strategic shopping and optimally managing these inventories of consumer goods. In addition, they choose to maintain liquid savings – household working capital – not just for precautionary motives but also to support this inventory management. We demonstrate that households earn high returns from inventory management at low levels of inventory, though returns decline rapidly as inventory levels increase. We provide evidence using scanner and survey data that supports this conclusion. High returns from inventory management that are declining in wealth offer a new rationale for poorer households not to participate in risky financial markets, wh...
August 2017Shopping for Lower Sales Tax Rates
with Scott R. Baker, Lorenz Kueng: w23665
Using comprehensive high-frequency state and local sales tax data, we show that shopping behavior responds strongly to changes in sales tax rates. Even though sales taxes are not observed in posted prices and have a wide range of rates and exemptions, consumers adjust in many dimensions. They stock up on storable goods before taxes rise and increase online and cross-border shopping in both the short and long run. The differences between short- and long-run spending responses have important implications for the efficacy of using sales taxes for counter-cyclical policy and for the design of an optimal tax framework. Interestingly, households adjust spending similarly for both taxable and tax-exempt goods. We embed an inventory problem into a continuous-time consumption-savings model and demo...
 
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