This research examines the responsiveness of the demand for marijuana to changes in its money price and criminal status using data on individuals from the Australian National Drug Strategy's Household Surveys (NDSHS). The results suggest that both the prevalence of marijuana use and the conditional demand for marijuana in the general population are responsive to changes in its money price. Significant differences are found in the effect of price on participation in marijuana use across age-groups, with participation by youth more price sensitive than participation by older age-groups. Similarly, the effect of the legal status of marijuana use on the participation decision is found to differ across age-groups and gender. Specifically, decriminalisation is associated with an increases in the prevalence of use by males over the age of 25. There is no evidence that decriminalisation significantly increases participation in marijuana use by either young males or females, or that decriminalisation increases the frequency of use among marijuana users.
Copyright 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.