Monday, May 18, 2015

"A Capitalist Idea" is Destroying Oligopoly Value of Taxi Medallions

Go Uber!

Chicago cab driver Gary Karczewski tells it pretty straight on how Uber, Lyft operate in the free market and destroy the the local government created taxi oligoploies.

USA Today explains what Uber and  other independent car services have done to the price of taxi medallions in Chicago:
In Chicago, which has the country's second biggest fleet with roughly 7,000 taxis, the median sale price for a medallion hovered around $70,000 in 2007 before reaching a median sales peak of $357,000 in late 2013. 
Since reaching that high point more than a year ago, the value of medallions in the Windy City have sharply declined and sales have ground to a near halt—with the city recording only seven medallion transfers in the first quarter of 2015—as the median sale price fell to about $270,000.


  1. Uber is actually a great way for advocates of the free market to explain the virtue of the market vs centrally-controlled, crony capitalism, as exemplified by the medallion cartels. There's a great article here somewhere. If I were a would-be economist in a PhD program, I'd write a blog post detailing this fact in an easy-to-read article. It might help make a name for someone.

    1. You would think so, but it's not that easy. There is a large segment of the population that won't touch such a service unless it is "regulated."

      Case in point; I cannot get my fiancée to use Uber no matter how hard I try, because she is convinced she'll get driven to a remote area and smashed in the face with a hammer.

      This is what we're faced with; not ignorance, but childishness.

  2. Is anyone making a market in Medallion Options? Seems like a perfect short.