Ceiling prices

Definition of ceiling prices – When there is a limit placed on the increase of prices in a market.

In a buffer stock scheme, governments attempt to reduce price volatility. Therefore, ceiling prices may be placed for certain goods; this prevents the price of food rising too rapidly.

If prices do rise and governments have stored foodstuffs in a buffer stock, they can release excess supplies onto the market, keeping the price down. Without the release of stocks into the market, ceiling prices are likely to lead to a shortage, waiting lists and black markets.

Maximum price


In this example, there is a maximum ceiling price of Max Price. This is lower than the market equilibrium of P1.

With the ceiling of Max price, it leads to a shortage (demand greater than supply)

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