The Impact of Economic Fluctuations on Crime: A Multiscale Analysis

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Niclas A Krüger

In this article we use a wavelet-based approach in order to analyse the periodicity in the relationship between economic fluctuations and different types of crime. All examined types of crime share seasonal behaviour with variations of real economic activity. Removing the intrayear dynamics, we find that the effect of real economic activity is different between different types of crime. We conclude that property crimes, violence crimes and sex crimes are countercyclical. The reverse is true for both alcohol/drug-related crimes and economic crimes, because there is a highly significant increase of these types of crime during economic expansions.

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