Abstract

In this paper we quantitatively synthesize empirical estimates of the income elasticity of gasoline demand reported in previous studies. The studies cover many countries and report a mean elasticity of 0.28 for the short run and 0.66 for the long run. We show, however, that these mean estimates are biased upwards because of publication bias---the tendency to suppress negative and insignificant estimates of the elasticity. We employ mixed-effects multilevel meta-regression to filter out publication bias from the literature. Our results suggest that the income elasticity of gasoline demand is on average much smaller than reported in previous surveys: the mean corrected for publication bias is 0.1 for the short run and 0.23 for the long run.

Reference: Tomas Havranek and Ondrej Kokes (2015), "Income Elasticity of Gasoline Demand: A Meta-Analysis." Energy Economics 47, pp. 77-86.