How does a large-scale disaster impact on the used-car market? A case study of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami

  • Yuya ShibuyaEmail author
  • Hideyuki Tanaka
Research article


The aim of this paper is to examine how a large-scale natural disaster impacts on the used-car market. This paper particularly tries to clarify what type of cars and what kinds of car features were demanded in damaged areas and when. We conduct a case study on the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami of 2011 and compare the used-car prices in damaged areas and non-damaged areas. The finding of this paper is that after the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, cheaper used cars and used cars with larger carrying capacity were needed in damaged areas. In addition, we find that car types which people in the damaged areas needed depend on the phase of recovery.


Used-car market Used-car supply Disaster logistics Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami 

JEL Classification

D12 L62 H12 



An earlier draft of this paper was presented at the 74th Conference of Japan Economic Policy Association, Asia University, May 28th, 2017. The authors would like to thank the session chair, commentators, and participants at the conference for giving constructive comments and advices. This study was partially supported by the research grant ‘Proto Award,’ which the first author received. We would also like to show our gratitude to Proto Corporation who provided various used-car market data, financial support, and expertise. This study is also partially supported by Graduate Program for Social ICT Global Creative Leaders, in which the authors participate.


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Copyright information

© Japan Economic Policy Association (JEPA) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information StudiesThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan

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