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Effectiveness of monetary information in promoting the purchase of energy-efficient appliances: evidence from a field experiment at a major retailer in

Keywords: energy efficiency, monetary information, household appliances, field experiment, rebate programme.

Author(s): María del Mar Solà, Marta Escapa and Ibon Galarraga

Date: 2022-01-02

Issue: 2021-03

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The effectiveness of energy labels is crucial in nudging the adoption of energy-efficient products. Here we analyse how providing monetary information on the cost of energy affects can increase purchases of more energy-efficient appliances. To that end, a field experiment was carried out at a major Spanish retailer. The appliances under study are washing-machines, fridges, dishwashers and tumble-driers. Monetary information was provided in different ways: (i) directly by sales staff; and (ii) directly by sales staff and via a supplementary label. We find that the effectiveness of providing monetary information depends on both the appliances and the specific way in which information is provided. The monetary information provided by sales staff alone is effective in promoting purchases of A++ washing-machines, fridges and dishwashers but no effect is found for tumble-driers. Then providing monetary information by the sales staff together with the supplementary label is effective in increasing purchases of A++ washing-machines and dishwashers and A+++ tumble-driers, but no effect is found for fridges. Prior to the experiment, a rebate programme was in place for few months and this programme had an impact even after it ended. This “memory effect” should be considered when analysing the effectiveness of such rebate programmes.

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