Crime rates and economic factors in Canada
LE3 .A278 2012
Bachelor of Arts
In the 1990s in the United States, crime fell in all categories and all parts of the country. This thesis examines whether or not this phenomenon occurred in Canada. In addition, it will examine the effect of socioeconomic factors on crime rates in Canada. Finally, I will observe whether this trend continued into the 2000s. Regression analysis is the main tool of analysis adopted in my thesis. In particular, time-‐series data (collected at the provincial level) will be utilized to estimate a panel data regression model. Provincial data are collected from CANSIM for the 1990-‐2009 period to conduct the panel data analysis. The following provinces are included in the sample: Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and British Columbia. Dependent variables consist of the overall crime rate, as well as violent and property crime rates. In terms of explanatory variables, factors that relate to population demographics (age, education and immigration), economic conditions (per capita income, unemployment, poverty rate, social assistance) and law enforcement (number of convicts and police expenditures) are included in the specification. Fixed effects models are adopted to control for time-‐invariant, province specific unobserved heterogeneity. Based on the regression results, key socioeconomic variables that might impact crime rates appear to be: GDP per capita, convicts, and police expenditures
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