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The End of Seasonality? New Insights from Sub-Saharan Africa

AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION AGRICULTURE ANALYSIS OF VARIANCE ARBITRAGE ARIMA AVERAGE PRICE BANANAS BARS BENCHMARK CAPITAL MARKETS CARROTS CASSAVA CEREALS COMMERCE COMMODITIES COMMODITY COMMODITY PRICE CONSUMERS CONSUMPTION LEVELS COOKING COST OF CAPITAL CREDIT CONSTRAINTS DEBTS DEFLATION DEVELOPING COUNTRIES DEVELOPMENT ECONOMICS DEVELOPMENT POLICY DOMESTIC MARKETS DOMESTIC PRICE DURABLE GOODS ECONOMETRIC ANALYSIS ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ECONOMICS LITERATURE ENTRY POINTS EXCHANGE RATES EXPENDITURE EXPENDITURES EXPORT MARKET FINANCIAL CRISIS FINANCIAL MARKETS FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS FLOUR FOOD CONSUMPTION FOOD CROPS FOOD INTAKE FOOD MARKETS FOOD POLICY FOOD PRICE FOOD PRICES FOOD PRODUCTION FOOD PRODUCTS FOOD SECURITY FOOD SHORTAGES FOOD STAPLES FOOD STORAGE FOOD TRANSFERS FOODS FRUITS FUTURES GAUGE GINI COEFFICIENT GRAINS GROUNDNUTS IMPERFECT COMPETITION INCOME INEQUALITY MEASURES INFLATION INTERNATIONAL MARKETS INTERNATIONAL TRADE LIBERALIZATION LIQUIDITY LOCAL CURRENCIES LOCAL CURRENCY MAIZE MARKET INTEGRATION MARKET POWER MARKET PRICE MARKET PRICES MARKET STRUCTURE MARKETING MARKETPLACE MARKETPLACES MOBILE PHONE MOBILE PHONES MONOPOLIES MORTGAGES OPPORTUNITY COST ORANGES PERISHABILITY PORK POTATOES PRICE ELASTICITY PRICE ELASTICITY OF DEMAND PRICE INDEX PRICE MOVEMENT PRICE MOVEMENTS PRICE RISK PRICE SERIES PRICE THEORY PRICE TRENDS PRICE VOLATILITY PRODUCT MARKET PRODUCTIVE ASSETS PULSES PURCHASING PURCHASING POWER RANDOM WALK RATE OF RETURN REGIONAL TRADE RETAIL RETAIL MARKETS RETAIL PRICES RICE SEASONAL FACTOR SEASONAL FACTORS SPREAD STAPLE FOODS STOCK EXCHANGE SUBSTITUTE SUBSTITUTION SUGAR SUPPLY INCREASES SWEET POTATOES THIRD WORLD TOMATOES TRANSACTION COSTS TROUGH TUBERS UNDUE INFLUENCE VEGETABLES VOLATILITY WHEAT WHEAT FLOUR WHOLESALE MARKETS WHOLESALE PRICE WHOLESALE PRICES WORLD MARKET WORLD MARKETS YAMS
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World Bank, Washington, DC
Africa | Sub-Saharan Africa
2014-06-25T21:56:37Z | 2014-06-25T21:56:37Z | 2014-06

This paper revisits the extent of seasonality in African livelihoods, which has disappeared from Africa's development debate. Through econometric analysis of monthly food price series across 100 locations in three countries during 2000-12, it is shown that seasonal movements in maize wholesale prices explain 20 (Tanzania, Uganda) to 40 (Malawi) percent of their monthly volatility. Monthly maize peak prices are on average 30 (Tanzania, Uganda) to 50 (Malawi) percent higher than their monthly troughs and two to three times higher than the seasonal gaps observed for white maize at the South African Futures Exchange. Furthermore, household food consumption is found to inversely track food prices in each country, decreasing when staple prices increase and increasing when they decline. Clearly, (excess) seasonality in African food markets and consumption persists, necessitating policy attention.

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