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Effects of enforcement on illegal markets: Evidence from migrant smuggling along the southwestern border

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Author Info

  • Gathmann, Christina

Abstract

The paper analyzes the effects of tighter border control on the illegal crossing market between Mexico and the United States. Combining panel data on illegal migrants with enforcement statistics, the effects of enforcement are found to be moderate: prices of border smugglers ('coyotes') increased by only 17%, while the demand for smugglers has remained unchanged. Enforcement has however shifted illegal migrants to remote crossing places. Border crossing is now more time-intensive with higher prices for coyotes and risk of death. This geographic substitution raised migration costs by $140, more than twice the effect of enforcement on smuggling prices.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6V76-4S8K9F9-2/2/3fa4d0eaf4ea0f3b70c5106d60183fa9
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 92 (2008)
Issue (Month): 10-11 (October)
Pages: 1926-1941

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:92:y:2008:i:10-11:p:1926-1941

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

Related research

Keywords: Enforcement Illegal migration Smuggling Crime Mexico;

References

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  1. Henry Saffer & Frank Chaloupka, 1995. "The Demand for Illicit Drugs," NBER Working Papers 5238, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Orrenius, Pia M. & Zavodny, Madeline, 2005. "Self-selection among undocumented immigrants from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 215-240, October.
  3. Ethier, Wilfred J, 1986. "Illegal Immigration: The Host-Country Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 56-71, March.
  4. Gary S. Becker, 1968. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76, pages 169.
  5. Gordon H. Hanson, 2006. "Illegal Migration from Mexico to the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 44(4), pages 869-924, December.
  6. Jeffrey A. Miron, 2003. "The Effect of Drug Prohibition on Drug Prices: Evidence from the Markets for Cocaine and Heroin," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 522-530, August.
  7. Kuziemko, Ilyana & Levitt, Steven D., 2004. "An empirical analysis of imprisoning drug offenders," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 2043-2066, August.
  8. Douglas Massey & Audrey Singer, 1995. "New Estimates of Undocumented Mexican Migration and the Probability of Apprehension," Demography, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 203-213, May.
  9. Katharine Donato & Jorge Durand & Douglas Massey, 1992. "Stemming the tide? Assessing the deterrent effects of the immigration reform and control act," Demography, Springer, vol. 29(2), pages 139-157, May.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Hernandez, Diego & Rudolph, Alexandra, 2011. "Modern Day Slavery: What Drives Human Trafficking in Europe?," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Berlin 2011 83, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
  2. Munirul H Nabin & Pasquale M Sgro, 2010. "Employer Sanctions, Illegal Migration and Welfare," Economics Series 2010_01, Deakin University, Faculty of Business and Law, School of Accounting, Economics and Finance.
  3. Djajić, Slobodan & Vinogradova, Alexandra, 2013. "Undocumented migrants in debt," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 15-24.
  4. Karin Mayr & Alexander Kemnitz, 2012. "Return Migration and Illegal Immigration Control," Vienna Economics Papers 1208, University of Vienna, Department of Economics.
  5. Jesús Fernández-Huertas Moraga, 2008. "New Evidence on Emigrant Selection," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 742.08, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  6. Tamura, Yuji, 2010. "Migrant smuggling," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(7-8), pages 540-548, August.
  7. Harlan Koff, 2006. "On the Cutting Edge: Border Integration and Security in Europe and North America," EUI-RSCAS Working Papers 21, European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS).
  8. Jesús Fernández-Huertas Moraga, 2008. "Wealth Constraints, Skill Prices or Networks: What Determines Emigrant Selection?," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 741.08, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  9. Anna Klabunde, 2014. "Computational Economic Modeling of Migration," Ruhr Economic Papers 0471, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  10. Diego Hernandez & Alexandra Rudolph, 2011. "Modern Day Slavery: What Drives Human Trafficking in Europe?," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 97, Courant Research Centre PEG, revised 23 Nov 2011.

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