NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Price, Tobacco Control Policies and Smoking Among Young Adults

Frank J. Chaloupka, Henry Wechsler

NBER Working Paper No. 5012
Issued in February 1995
NBER Program(s):   HE

The effects of cigarette prices and tobacco control policies (including restrictions on smoking in public places and limits on the availability of tobacco products to youths) on cigarette smoking among youths and young adults are estimated using data from a nationally representative survey of students in U.S. colleges and universities. Smoking participation rates, the quantity of cigarettes smoked by smokers, and level of smoking equations are estimated using appropriate econometric methods. The estimates indicate that college students are quite sensitive to the price of cigarettes, with an average estimated price elasticity of smoking participation of -0.66 and an overall average estimated price elasticity of cigarette smoking of -1.43. In addition, relatively stringent restrictions on smoking in public places are found to reduce smoking participation rates among college students, while the quantity of cigarettes consumed by smokers is lowered by any restrictions on public smoking. Finally, limits on the availability of tobacco products to underage youths have no impact on college students, almost all of whom can legally purchase these products.

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Published: Chaloupka, Frank J. and Henry Wechsler. "Price, Tobacco Control Policies And Smoking Among Young Adults," Journal of Health Economics, 1997, v16(3,Jun), 359-373.

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