The effects of stolen goods markets on crime: pawnshops, property theft, and the gold rush of the 2000s

d'Este, Rocco (2020) The effects of stolen goods markets on crime: pawnshops, property theft, and the gold rush of the 2000s. The Journal of Law & Economics, 63 (3). pp. 449-472. ISSN 0022-2186

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Abstract

This paper investigates the effects of stolen-goods markets on crime. I focus on pawnshops, a legitimate business often associated with the illicit trade of stolen property. Within-county estimates reveal that a 10 percent increase in the rate of pawnshops increases, by around .3 percent, the rate of acquisitive crimes that yield stolen goods that might be tradeable to pawnshops. A quasi-experimental design shows that the effects of changes in gold prices on burglaries are amplified by the initial stock of pawnshops in a county. Overall, the analysis suggests that a larger market for the trade of stolen property can affect burglars’ incentives by increasing the value of criminal opportunities.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > Economics
Depositing User: Rocco d-Este
Date Deposited: 28 Nov 2019 09:27
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2021 01:00
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/88315

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