nep-law New Economics Papers
on Law and Economics
Issue of 2022‒06‒13
nine papers chosen by
Eve-Angeline Lambert, Université de Lorraine

  1. Crime and weather. Evidence from the Czech Republic. By Vojtech Misak
  2. Corporate prosecutions: American law enforcement in global markets By Woll, Cornelia
  3. CK Telecoms and the New Frame of Reference for the Analysis of Unilateral Effects in EU Merger Control By Elias
  4. Parole, Recidivism, and the Role of Supervised Transition By William Arbour; Steeve Marchand
  5. Property Rights In Pakistan: Laws, Regulations, Transfers & Enforcement By Raja Rafi Ullah; Muhammad Shaaf Najib
  6. Tax Robbery Incorporated: The transnational legal infrastructures of tax arbitrage By Liste, Philip
  7. Legal Design in Sustainable Antitrust By Inderst, Roman; Thomas, Stefan
  8. The Scope and Limitations of Incorporating Externalities in Competition Analysis within a Consumer Welfare Approach By Inderst, Roman; Thomas, Stefan
  9. How Do Reward Versus Penalty Framed Incentives Affect Diagnostic Performance in Auditing? By Bright (Yue) Hong; Timothy W. Shields

  1. By: Vojtech Misak (Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic)
    Abstract: This article estimates the impact of weather on crime in the Czech Republic. Using detailed crime data during the years 2005-2015, I show that temperature has a significant positive effect on the total number of assaults, thefts, robberies and sexual crimes recorded. Furthermore, precipitation is found to have a negative significant effect on the number of assaults and sexual crimes committed. Finally, based on my results, temperature seems to cause an overall increase in assaults´˜ and thefts´˜ rates. Heat effect on sexual crimes is more a substitution effect between cold and hot days.
    Keywords: crime, temperature, precipitation
    JEL: K14 K42 K49
    Date: 2022–05
  2. By: Woll, Cornelia
    Abstract: Large companies are increasingly on trial. Over the last decade, many of the world's biggest firms have been embroiled in legal disputes over corruption charges, financial fraud, environmental damage, taxation issues or sanction violations, ending in convictions or settlements of record-breaking fines, well above the billion-dollar mark. For critics of globalization, this turn towards corporate accountability is a welcome sea-change showing that multinational companies are no longer above the law. For legal experts, the trend is noteworthy because of the extraterritorial dimensions of law enforcement, as companies are increasingly held accountable for activities independent of their nationality or the place of the activities. Indeed, the global trend required understanding the evolution of corporate criminal law enforcement in the United States in particular, where authorities have skillfully expanded its effective jurisdiction beyond its territory. This paper traces the evolution of corporate prosecutions in the United States. Analyzing federal prosecution data, it then shows that foreign firms are more likely to pay a fine, which is on average 6,6 times larger.
    Date: 2022
  3. By: Elias (Centre for Competition Policy and School of Law, University of East Anglia)
    Abstract: In the recent CK Telecoms (Case T-399/16) judgment, the General Court annulled the European Commission’s decision to block the 4-to-3 telecom merger Hutchison3G UK/Telefónica UK. This watershed case is set to curtail the Commission’s ability to challenge future mergers in concentrated markets and proposes a fundamental reshape of the analysis of unilateral effects in the absence of dominance. This article shows that CK Telecoms advances six propositions that form the foundations of a new frame of reference for the analysis of unilateral effects under the EU Merger Regulation. This new framework has been welcomed by commentators as a long-overdue recognition that ‘the law’ trumps the Commission’s administrative discretion and as a vindication of the ‘more economic approach’. Based on a thorough review of 15 years of merger enforcement in the mobile telecommunication sector, this article challenges this account by debunking both the ‘rule of law’ and the ‘more economic approach’ arguments in support of the new framework. It instead demonstrates that each of the six principles advanced by CK Telecoms neither constitutes a reaffirmation of the ‘law’, nor aligns EU merger enforcement with the economic analysis of unilateral effects. In critically reflecting on the new framework laid down in CK Telecoms, this article formulates a number of policy proposals as building blocks for an alternative frame of reference that would preserve the effectiveness of EU merger enforcement in unilateral effects cases while enhancing its legal certainty.
    Keywords: Competition Law, Antitrust, Compliance, Cartels.
    Date: 2022–06–06
  4. By: William Arbour; Steeve Marchand
    Abstract: We estimate the causal effect of parole on recidivism by exploiting the random assignment of parole board members to hearings in Quebec prisons. Board members vary in their propensity to grant parole and to place parolees to supervised halfway houses. We find that parole decreases the likelihood of recidivism by 8 percentage points within 5 years. Parolees at the margin of remaining incarcerated spend on average 4 fewer months incarcerated during the course of the next 5 years. This effect is largely driven by the direct release of parolees, but also by reduced incarceration time in future sentences. We further investigate the role of halfway houses in the reintegration process by estimating their effect on different groups of compliers. Our analysis shows that a stay in a halfway house is especially effective for convicts at the margin of remaining incarcerated.
    Keywords: Parole, Recidivism, Halfway Houses, Reentry
    JEL: K42
    Date: 2022–05–23
  5. By: Raja Rafi Ullah (Pakistan Institute of Development Economics); Muhammad Shaaf Najib (Pakistan Institute of Development Economics)
    Abstract: Defining, allocating, and protecting property rights is an essential tool to form the basis of efficient and effective markets and society. ‘Property Rights’ is a term used to define the right to possess resources and the right to determine their utilisation. The term is not limited to just public ownerships, but property rights are extended to private individuals and organisations. However, the issue of property rights remains a highly complex matter and must be thoroughly assessed. Every country defines property rights through various laws, rules, and regulations, with ultimate enforcement of property rights the responsibility of the state and its institutions. In the case of Pakistan, it is essential to study the relevant laws defining and governing property rights comprehensively. This brief aims to describe Pakistan’s existing land property rights and evaluate the land record system. Moreover, the brief will also identify the laws regulating property rights in Pakistan and analyse the right to transfer land and property.
    Keywords: Property Rights, Pakistan, Laws, Regulations, Transfers, Enforcement
    Date: 2022
  6. By: Liste, Philip
    Abstract: In the media, the so-called cum/ex trades were addressed as the biggest tax robbery in history. In a few years, the financial trading scheme caused an estimated damage to European state treasuries of ca. 50 billion euros. Through highly complex transactions, a network of equity traders, banks, super-rich investors, and lawyers generated returns of capital income tax that had never been paid before. In 2019, two involved British traders were put on trial in Bonn, Germany. Due to their cooperative behaviour, they received only mild sentences. Yet, this first cum/ex lawsuit has been a critical starting point for a wave of trials to follow. Observing the trial, the paper focuses on the role of law in the cum/ex industry. First, law is addressed not as constraining but enabling tax-driven equity - as an infrastructure that makes dark finance possible. Second, this legal infrastructure is not fixed but depends on an ongoing legal practice. And third, the infrastructure used for dark finance is not limited to domestic law. Rather, the relevant trading structures involve a series of transnational transactions, which are subject to various regulatory regimes, domestic and international, as well as public and private.
    Keywords: Cum/ex,global tax governance,legal infrastructure,transnational law,white-collar crime,finance,court ethnography,practice,expertise,law and society studies
    Date: 2022
  7. By: Inderst, Roman; Thomas, Stefan
    Abstract: We lay out a roadmap for how the legislator could create a framework of “sustainability corridors” that would allow to rely on the ancillary restraints doctrine to make antitrust law more accommodating of sustainability considerations. We show how this avoids the pitfalls of a multi-goals approach, under which it would be left to antitrust authorities and courts to reconcile sustainability and competition objectives, while out-of-market benefits (externalities), that would escape even a broad consumer welfare approach, can still be accounted for. Our proposal sets out specific requirements for such sustainability corridors that ensure that the ensuing antitrust assessment is governed by a strict and quantifiable indispensability test. Specifically, we discuss three such instances: specific sustainability obligations placed on individual firms, which may however require collective actions; specific mandates that are targeted at the respective industry rather than individual firms; and policy objectives that are not targeted at individual firms or industries but provide a metric for the measurement of sustainability benefits (e.g., by way of conducting an abatement cost analysis).
    Keywords: sustainability,ancillary restraints doctrine
    JEL: D4
    Date: 2022
  8. By: Inderst, Roman; Thomas, Stefan
    Abstract: The failure to fully internalize externalities from production and consumption, including on future generations, is supposed to be at the core of the perceived failure to ensure (ecological) sustainability within the realm of antitrust enforcement. As policymakers put increasing pressure on competition agencies to account for sustainability in their enforcement practice, it becomes pivotal to define whether and, if so, how such externalities can be incorporated into competition analysis. Rather than positing that sustainability should constitute a goal in itself, we explore how sustainability can be incorporated within a consumer welfare analysis. Our paper makes a key distinction between what we term an individualistic and a collective consumer welfare analysis. Within an individualistic consumer welfare analysis, consumers’ willingness-to-pay is measured ceteris paribus, holding other consumers’ choices fixed. We explore how, e.g., through contingent valuation and conjoint analysis, consumers’ appreciation of sustainability benefits and with it the reduction of externalities on others can be elicited. Specifically, we discuss how the context-sensitivity of extracted willingness-to-pay provides both challenges and opportunities for antitrust enforcement in the context of sustainability measures. In a collective consumer welfare analysis, consumers may express their willingness-to-pay also for the choices of others and, thereby, also for the reduction of externalities on themselves. Borrowing from environmental and resource economics, we also discuss more indirect ways of incorporating such externalities. And we critically assess the possibility of “laundering” consumers’ sustainability preferences in the light of supposed biases and cognitive limitations.
    Keywords: sustainability,externalities,willingness-to-pay
    JEL: A13 K21 K32
    Date: 2021
  9. By: Bright (Yue) Hong (School of Accountancy & MIS, Driehaus College of Business, DePaul University); Timothy W. Shields (Argyros School of Business and Management, Economic Science Institute, Chapman University)
    Abstract: Prior research examines how rewards versus economically equivalent penalties affect effort. However, accountants perform various diagnostic analyses that involve more than exerting effort. For example, auditors often need to identify whether a material misstatement is the underlying cause of a phenomenon among the possible causes. Testing helps identify the cause, but testing is costly. When participants are incentivized to test accurately (rather than test more) and objectively (unbiased between testing and not testing), we find that framing the incentives as rewards versus equivalent penalties increases testing by lowering the subjective testing criterion and by increasing the assessed risk of material misstatement. However, testing increases primarily when a misstatement is absent, causing more false alarms under a reward frame with no improvement in misstatement detection. Penalties are pervasive in auditing. Our study suggests that rewards are more effective for increasing testing, and that increasing testing blindly can impair audit efficiency.
    Keywords: Frame, rewards, penalties, objectivity, accuracy, judgment, diagnostic tasks, experiment, auditing
    JEL: C92 D82 D81 M40
    Date: 2022

This nep-law issue is ©2022 by Eve-Angeline Lambert. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.