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Passenger Shipping Cartels and Their Effect on Trans-Atlantic Migration

Author

Listed:
  • George Deltas

    (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Department of Economics)

  • Richard Sicotte

    (University of Vermont, Department of Economics)

  • Peter Tomczak

    (Baker & McKenzie LLP)

Abstract

We investigate the impact of passenger shipping cartels on trans-Atlantic migration during the early twentieth century. We assemble from primary sources a detailed database of passenger flows and cartel operations and show that cartel operation reduced migratory flows by approximately 20% to 25%. Further, we show that there was no strong intertemporal substitution in migration to North America (at least in the short run) and, therefore, that the effects of cartel operation were not "undone" by later migration. Lastly, we find that cartel operation had no appreciable effect on the variability of migration flows, providing evidence against the notion that unfettered competition was destabilizing to turn-of-the-century transportation markets. Copyright by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Suggested Citation

  • George Deltas & Richard Sicotte & Peter Tomczak, 2008. "Passenger Shipping Cartels and Their Effect on Trans-Atlantic Migration," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(1), pages 119-133, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:90:y:2008:i:1:p:119-133
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    Cited by:

    1. Emmanuelle Auriol & Alice Mesnard, 2016. "Sale of Visas: a Smuggler's Final Song?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 83(332), pages 646-678, October.
    2. Auriol, E. & Mesnard, A., 2012. "Sale of visas : a smuggler’s final song?," Working Papers 17/12, Department of Economics, City University London.
    3. Timothy J. Hatton, 2010. "The Cliometrics Of International Migration: A Survey," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(5), pages 941-969, December.
    4. Bandiera, Oriana & Rasul, Imran & Viarengo, Martina, 2013. "The Making of Modern America: Migratory Flows in the Age of Mass Migration," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 23-47.
    5. Francesco Giffoni & Matteo Gomellini, 2015. "Brain gain in the age of mass migration," Quaderni di storia economica (Economic History Working Papers) 34, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.

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