Why Would Law Students Benefit from Studying Economics?

Why would law students benefit from studying economics? Three reasons come to mind. First, knowing some economics should enable students to understand more fully the issues encountered in a variety of areas of the law. Second, in a variety of areas of the law, economic analysis constitutes a central component of the legal arguments made in prosecuting and defending the case. Third, many law students will become involved in policy-making, whether because they end up working in the executive branch of government or because they become legislators, lobbyists, or legislative staff.

In the following sections, I treat each of the three points in greater detail, providing examples of the use and abuse of economic analysis.