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Profiting from Public Works: Financial Returns to Infrastructure and Investment Strategies during Britain's Industrial Revolution

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  • Dan Bogart

    ()
    (Department of Economics, University of California-Irvine)

Abstract

The infrastructure sector has the potential to generate wide differences in profits and economic outcomes. This paper examines financial returns and investment strategies for Britain’s turnpike roads in the early nineteenth century. There are three main findings. First, rates of return on capital invested and returns to bondholders were similar to competitive sectors. Second, there was significant variation in returns across trusts. Third, there is evidence that turnpike investors were driven by financial motives, although economic motives appear to be important in some cases. The findings have implications regarding the connection between infrastructure and Britain’s industrialization.

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File URL: http://www.economics.uci.edu/files/economics/docs/workingpapers/2012-13/bogart-04.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 121304.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:irv:wpaper:121304

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Keywords: Monopoly; Regulation; Turnpike roads; Infrastructure; Britain; Industrial Revolution;

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References

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  1. Klein, Daniel B., 1990. "The Voluntary Provision of Public Goods? The Turnpike Companies of Early America," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt2587p3z1, University of California Transportation Center.
  2. David S. Jacks, 2010. "Foreign Wars, Domestic Markets: England, 1793-1815," NBER Working Papers 16236, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Carol H. Shiue & Wolfgang Keller, 2004. "Markets in China and Europe on the Eve of the Industrial Revolution," NBER Working Papers 10778, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Allen,Robert C., 2009. "The British Industrial Revolution in Global Perspective," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521687850, October.
  5. Alex Trew, 2010. "Infrastructure Finance and Industrial Takeoff in England," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 42(6), pages 985-1010, 09.
  6. Dan Bogart, 2009. "Turnpike trusts and property income: new evidence on the effects of transport improvements and legislation in eighteenth-century England -super-1," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 62(1), pages 128-152, 02.
  7. Bogart, Dan, 2005. "Did Turnpike Trusts Increase Transportation Investment in Eighteenth-Century England?," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 65(02), pages 439-468, June.
  8. Laffont,Jean-Jacques, 2005. "Regulation and Development," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521549486, October.
  9. Klein, Daniel & Majewski, John, 1991. "Economy, Community and Law: The Turnpike Movement in New York, 1797-1845," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt61b022cr, University of California Transportation Center.
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Cited by:
  1. Dan Bogart, 2013. "The Transportation Revolution in Industrializing Britain: A Survey," Working Papers 121306, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.

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