Homicides in Mexico and the Expiration of the U.S. Federal Assault Weapons Ban: A Difference-in-Discontinuities Approach

Journal of Economic Geography, Vol. 17, No. 4, 2017

58 Pages Posted: 16 Apr 2016 Last revised: 18 Aug 2017

See all articles by Luke Chicoine

Luke Chicoine

Bates College; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: August 17, 2016

Abstract

The year following the expiration of the U.S. Assault Weapons Ban (AWB), the homicide rate in Mexico increased for the first time in a decade. A difference-in-discontinuities model and a unique dataset are used to compare discontinuities generated by close mayoral elections on either side of the AWB expiration. The model finds a statistically significant increase in the firearm homicide rate following the expiration. The effect is larger closer to the U.S.-Mexico border, and is isolated to the timing of the AWB expiration. Furthermore, there is no evidence of a concurrent increase in non-firearm homicides or other violent crimes.

Keywords: Mexico; gun violence; homicides; assault weapons ban

JEL Classification: F52, I18, K42

Suggested Citation

Chicoine, Luke, Homicides in Mexico and the Expiration of the U.S. Federal Assault Weapons Ban: A Difference-in-Discontinuities Approach (August 17, 2016). Journal of Economic Geography, Vol. 17, No. 4, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2647408 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2647408

Luke Chicoine (Contact Author)

Bates College ( email )

Lewiston, ME 04240
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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