AbstractThis paper investigates the impact of hurricanes in the Caribbean on sugar prices in Britain between 1815 and 1841. We expect the news of hurricanes arriving at British harbors to drive up sugar prices mainly because the market anticipated that the supply of sugar from the Caribbean colonies would drop dramatically in the near future. Our econometric results suggest a significant rise in prices due to hurricanes. Moreover we find that the lag between the hurricane strike and its transmission into sugar prices on the London market decreased over our sample period. This latter result might be explained by the technological innovations marking this era, where technological progress in transport reduced the time required for information to cross the Atlantic, making markets more reactive to the news of supply shocks.
Weather, Climate, and Society – American Meteorological Society
Published: Jul 25, 2017
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