Using Placebo Laws to Test "More Guns, Less Crime"

  title={Using Placebo Laws to Test "More Guns, Less Crime"},
  author={Eric Helland and Alexander Tabarrok},
  journal={Advances in Economic Analysis \& Policy},
Abstract We reexamine Mustard and Lott’s controversial study on the effect of “shall-issue” gun laws on crime using an empirical standard error function randomly generated from “placebo” laws. We find that the effect of shall-issue laws on crime is much less well-estimated than the Mustard and Lott (1997) and Lott (2000) results suggest. We also find, however, that the cross equation restrictions implied by the Lott-Mustard theory are supported. A boomlet has occurred in recent years in the use… Expand

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