The Smuggling of Art, and the Art of Smuggling: Uncovering the Illicit Trade in Cultural Property and Antiques
We empirically analyze the illicit trade in cultural property and antiques, taking advantage of different reporting incentives between source and destination countries. We thus generate a measure of illicit trafficking in these goods based on the difference between imports recorded in United States' customs data and the (purportedly identical) trade as recorded by customs authorities in exporting countries. We find that this reporting gap is highly correlated with the corruption level of the exporting country as measured by commonly used survey-based indicies, and that this correlation is stronger for artifact-rich countries. As a placebo test, we do not observe any such pattern for U.S. imports of toys from these same exporters. We report similar results for four other Western country markets. Our analysis provides a useful framework for studying trade in illicit goods. Further, our results provide empirical confirmation that survey-based corruption indicies are informative, as they are correlated with an objective measure of illicit activity.
|Date of creation:||Sep 2007|
|Publication status:||published as Raymond Fisman & Shang-Jin Wei, 2009. "The Smuggling of Art, and the Art of Smuggling: Uncovering the Illicit Trade in Cultural Property and Antiques," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(3), pages 82-96, July.|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
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- de Sousa, José & Mayer, Thierry & Zignago, Soledad, 2012.
"Market access in global and regional trade,"
Regional Science and Urban Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 42(6), pages 1037-1052.
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- De Sousa, José & Mayer, Thierry & Zignago, Soledad, 2012. "Market Access in Global and Regional Trade," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Docweb) 1201, CEPREMAP.
- de Sousa, J. & Mayer, T. & Zignago, S., 2011. "Market access in global and regional trade," Working papers 358, Banque de France.
- de Sousa, José & Mayer, Thierry & Zignago, Soledad, 2012. "Market Access in Global and Regional Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 9085, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- De Sousa, Jose & Mayer, Thierry & Zignago, Soledad, 2011. "Market access in global and regional trade," MPRA Paper 35602, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Thierry Mayer & Soledad Zignago, 2005. "Market Access in Global and Regional Trade," Working Papers 2005-02, CEPII research center.
- Raymond Fisman & Edward Miguel, 2007. "Corruption, Norms, and Legal Enforcement: Evidence from Diplomatic Parking Tickets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115(6), pages 1020-1048, December.
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"Can Enforcement Backfire? Crime Displacement in the Context of Customs Reform in the Philippines,"
The Review of Economics and Statistics,
MIT Press, vol. 90(1), pages 1-14, February.
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