A second challenge of effective price analysis to understand and include the context
within which price developments can be interpreted. Understanding the patterns of
agricultural production and consumption, past price and market behavior, and the policy
environment are critical.
Finally, another challenge is to be able to perform all activities to report in a useful
(actionable) and timely manner. These activities include the establishment of a data
management system (from collection to processing to archiving), routine analysis
procedures, and presentation format.
1.3 Organization of the manual
This manual is divided into 6 chapters, with each chapter describing and guiding the reader
to complete the sequential steps necessary to efficiently report price developments.
Chapter 2: Price theory and analysis for early warning:
Topics include simple price
analysis theory such as the role of prices and markets, the influence of market structure on
prices, the impact of market distortions, seasonal price patterns, the influence of
macroeconomic factors on market behavior.
Chapter 3: Food system context:
Topics include the identification of key contextual
information such as agricultural production patterns, consumption patterns, national
marketing patterns, external trade patterns, marketing policies, and macroeconomic patterns.
Also, selection criteria for markets and commodities for monitoring are presented.
Chapter 4: Data collection and management
Topics include data/file management and
verification, sources of price data and market information, and the selection of software to
analyze and present price information, and the types and sources of other complimentary
data required to do price analysis.
Chapter 5: Analysis of historical price data
Topics include techniques to review
historical price behavior both graphically and quantitatively) and reviewing interesting case
Chapter 6: Routine market analysis and reporting:
Topics include routine market
analysis activities, fundamentals of reporting, and some suggestions about presentation
formats and styles.
There are 10 appendices that offer a variety of information that complements
that contained in the chapters of this manual.
presents a bibliography of useful price analysis texts and papers.
presents a worksheet to identify agricultural production patterns