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Michigan’s Item Pricing Law: The Price Tag for Retailers and Consumers

Megan Henriksen, Scott Watkins, Governor Snyder and Patrick Anderson at the bill signing to repeal the item pricing law.
 
Michigan faces a host of challenges as we enter the second decade of the 21st century. Chief among these are the realities and perceptions that Michigan is stuck in the 20th century, and that outdated regulations are stopping businesses and citizens from moving ahead.
 
This report assesses the costs and benefits associated with one such regulation— the Item Pricing Law (IPL)—which went into effect on January 1, 1978 and has not significantly been amended since.1 We conclude that the time has come for Michigan to reform its IPL. Only eight states have any form of an IPL, and Michigan’s is by far the most burdensome. Michigan is the only state that still requires a price label to be placed on nearly every consumer item, which creates unnecessary costs for both businesses and consumers, and yields little or no benefits that are not otherwise afforded to consumers in other states. 

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