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Assessing substitution and complementary effects amongst crime typologies

Detotto, Claudio and Pulina, Manuela (2010): Assessing substitution and complementary effects amongst crime typologies.

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Abstract

This paper aims at assessing how offenders allocate their effort amongst several crime typologies. Specifically, complementary and substitution effects are tested amongst number of recorded crimes. Furthermore, the extent to which crime is detrimental for economic growth is also tested. The case study is Italy and the time span under analysis is from 1981:1 up to 2004:4. A Vector Autoregressive Correction Mechanism (VECM) is employed after having assessed the integration and cointegration status of the variables under investigation. The main findings are that a bi-directional complementary effect exists between drug related crimes and receiving, whereas a bi-directional substitution effect is detected between robberies, extortions and kidnapping and homicides and falsity, respectively. Furthermore, economic growth produces a positive effect on the growth of homicides, receiving and drug related crimes; while, the growth in robberies, extortion and kidnapping and falsity have a crowding-out effect on economic growth.

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