NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

The Response to Fines and Probability of Detection in a Series of Experiments

Avner Bar-Ilan, Bruce Sacerdote

NBER Working Paper No. 8638
Issued in December 2001
NBER Program(s):   LE

We use traffic data from a series of experiments in the United States and Israel to examine how illegal behavior is deterred by various penalty schemes and whether deterrence varies with age, income, driving record and criminal record. We find that red light running decreases sharply in response to an increase in the fine or an increase in the probability of being caught. The elasticity of violations with respect to the fine is larger for younger drivers and drivers with older cars. Drivers convicted of violent offenses or property offenses run more red lights on average but have the same elasticity as drivers without a criminal record. Within Israel, members of ethnic minority groups have the smallest elasticity with respect to a fine increase.

download in pdf format
   (287 K)

email paper

This paper is available as PDF (287 K) or via email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w8638

Published: Bar-Ilan, Avner and Bruce Sacerdote. "Response to Fines and Probabilities in a Natural Experiment." Journal of Law and Economics 47, 1 (April 2004).

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Becker Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach
Polinsky w10761 The Optimal Use of Fines and Imprisonment When Wealth is Unobservable
Piehl and Williams Institutional Requirements for Effective Imposition of Fines
Harbaugh, Mocan, and Visser w17059 Theft and Deterrence
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us