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State Gun Policy and Cross-State Externalities: Evidence from Crime Gun Tracing

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  • Brian G. Knight

Abstract

This paper provides a theoretical and empirical analysis of cross-state externalities associated with gun regulations in the context of the gun trafficking market. Using gun tracing data, which identify the source state for crime guns recovered in destination states, we find that firearms in this market tend to flow from states with weak gun laws to states with strict gun laws, satisfying a necessary condition for the existence of cross-state externalities in the theoretical model. We also find an important role for transportation costs in this market, with gun flows more significant between nearby states; this finding suggests that externalities are spatial in nature. Finally, we present evidence that criminal possession of guns is higher in states exposed to weak gun laws in nearby states.

Suggested Citation

  • Brian G. Knight, 2011. "State Gun Policy and Cross-State Externalities: Evidence from Crime Gun Tracing," NBER Working Papers 17469, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17469
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    Cited by:

    1. Khalil, Umair, 2017. "Do more guns lead to more crime? Understanding the role of illegal firearms," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 133(C), pages 342-361.
    2. Galletta, Sergio, 2017. "Law enforcement, municipal budgets and spillover effects: Evidence from a quasi-experiment in Italy," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 90-105.
    3. Laurent Bouton & Paola Conconi & Francisco Pino & Maurizio Zanardi, 2018. "Guns, Environment, and Abortion: How Single-Minded Voters Shape Politicians' Decisions," Working Papers wp459, University of Chile, Department of Economics.
    4. Alesina, Alberto & Passarelli, Francesco, 2014. "Regulation versus taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 147-156.
    5. Seiffert, Sebastian Daniel & Kukharskyy, Bohdan, 2016. "Gun Violence in the US: Correlates and Causes," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145946, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    6. Laurent Bouton & Paola Conconi & Francisco Pino & Maurizio Zanardi, 2013. "Guns and Votes," Working Papers ECARES ECARES 2013-39, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
      • Laurent Bouton & Paola Conconi & Francisco Pino & Maurizio Zanardi, 2014. "Guns and Votes," NBER Working Papers 20253, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
      • Laurent Bouton & Paola Conconi & Francisco Pino & Maurizio Zanardi, 2013. "Guns and votes," Working Papers 43819146, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
      • Bouton, Laurent & Conconi, Paola & Pino, Francisco & Zanardi, Maurizio, 2013. "Guns and Votes," CEPR Discussion Papers 9726, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Ruben Durante & Emilio Gutierrez, 2013. "Fighting Crime with a Little Help from my Friends: Party Affiliation, Inter‐jurisdictional Cooperation and Crime in Mexico," Sciences Po publications 17, Sciences Po.
    8. David Fortunato, 2015. "Can Easing Concealed Carry Deter Crime?," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1071-1085, December.
    9. Chemin, Matthieu & Mbiekop, Flaubert, 2015. "Addressing child sex tourism: The Indian case," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 169-180.
    10. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/6ggbvnr6munghes9oaso1e0k4 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Lee, Kangoh, 2015. "Federalism, guns, and jurisdictional gun policies," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 141-153.
    12. Leo H. Kahane, 2013. "Understanding The Interstate Export Of Crime Guns: A Gravity Model Approach," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 31(3), pages 618-634, July.
    13. Brian G. Knight & Nathan M. Schiff, 2016. "The Out-of-State Tuition Distortion," NBER Working Papers 22996, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Jurgen Brauer & Daniel Montolio & Elisa Trujillo-Baute, 2017. "How do US state firearms laws affect firearms manufacturing location? An empirical investigation, 1986–2010," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(4), pages 753-790.
    15. Depetris-Chauvin, Emilio, 2015. "Fear of Obama: An empirical study of the demand for guns and the U.S. 2008 presidential election," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 66-79.
    16. Durante, Ruben & Gutierrez, Emilio, 2015. "Fighting Crime with a Little Help from my Friends: Political Alignment, Inter-Jurisdictional Cooperation and Crime in Mexico," CEPR Discussion Papers 10769, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • K4 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior

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