How Important are Tobacco Prices in the Propensity to Start and Quit Smoking? An Analysis of Smoking Histories from the Spanish National Health Survey

UPF Economics and Business Working Paper No. 548

Posted: 23 Sep 2002

Abstract

This paper analyses the effect of tobacco prices on the propensity to start and quit smoking using a pool of the 1993, 1995 and 1997 editions of the Spanish National Health Surveys. The estimates for several parametric models of the hazard rate for starting and quitting suggest that i) The public health measures applied as of 1992 have had a significative effect on both reducing the hazard of starting and increasing the hazard of quitting, ii) Prices have a very weak effect on the hazard of starting in the male population and no significant effect in the female population, iii) The price floor of cigarrettes, proxied by the average price of a pack of black cigarrettes, has a significant effect on the quitting hazard which is robust across specifications and applies to both men and women. The implied price elasticity of the time up to quitting is situated around -1.4.

Keywords: Smoking, taxes, health, care

JEL Classification: C5, D12, H3

Suggested Citation

López Nicolás, Ángel, How Important are Tobacco Prices in the Propensity to Start and Quit Smoking? An Analysis of Smoking Histories from the Spanish National Health Survey. UPF Economics and Business Working Paper No. 548, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=310115

Ángel López Nicolás (Contact Author)

Universitat Pompeu Fabra ( email )

Ramon Trias Fargas 25-27
Barcelona, 08005
Spain
(34-3) 542 27 08 (Phone)
(34-3) 542 17 46 (Fax)

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