Thursday, January 31, 2013


The New York Times has an interesting article on how individuals are changing their "demand" for burial to cremation, and what seems to be a large driver of this change is economics, specifically the prices of these two services. According to the article, the price of cremation is about $1600 and the price of a funeral and burial is between $10,000 and $16,000. Given that "consumers" are switching from the higher priced funeral and burial to the lower priced cremation, this is a rather morbid economic example of a substitute. For those reading that article, you may also notice there is an income effect as well - lower incomes leading to more demand for cremation. If that is the case, then cremation would also be an economic example of an inferior good and burial would be an example of a normal good.

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