DP17287 Alcohol Price Floors and Externalities: The Case of Fatal Road Crashes

Author(s): Marco Francesconi, Jonathan James
Publication Date: May 2022
Keyword(s): Alcohol, Driving under the influence, externality, Minimum Unit Pricing, Motor vehicle collisions
JEL(s): D12, D62, H23, K42, R41
Programme Areas: Labour Economics, Public Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=17287

In May 2018, Scotland introduced a minimum unit price on alcohol. We examine the impact of this policy on traffic fatalities and drunk driving accidents. Using administrative data on the universe of vehicle collisions in Britain and a range of quasi-experimental modeling approaches, we do not find that the policy had an effect on road crash deaths and drunk driving collisions. The results are robust to several sensitivity exercises. There is no evidence of effect heterogeneity by income and other predictors of alcohol consumption or cross-border effects. A brief discussion of the policy implications of our findings is provided.