The European grain invasion, 1870-1913

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The article quantifies the impact of cheap grain on the European economy in the late nineteenth century. Falling transport costs led to dramatic declines in AngloAmerican grain price gaps, but price convergence was less impressive between the U.S. and other European economies, and within Europe. Cheaper grain meant lower rents throughout Europe, and protection boosted rents, but the magnitudes involved differed between countries. Similarly, cheap grain increased real wages in Britain, but lowered them elsewhere. The grain invasion implied different shocks across countries, and this partly explains the varying trade policies pursued in Europe during this period.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)775-801
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Economic History
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)


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