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The Determinants of Smoking Initiation: Empirical Evidence for Germany

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  • Silja Göhlmann
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    Abstract

    This paper aims at analyzing the determinants of the decision to start smoking using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP). The data used is a combination of retrospective information on the age individuals started smoking and, by tracing back these individuals within the panel structure up to the point they started smoking, information on characteristics at the age of smoking initiation. In contrast to other papers, it is possible to control for the environment at the time of smoking on set that might have influenced the decision to start. Moreover, never-smokers can be distinguished from ex-smokers. I estimate discrete, but also continuous time hazard models. Results indicate that young higher educated individuals are less likely to start, whereas the hazard of starting among older individuals is not affected by education. Furthermore, parental smoking during the whole childhood significantly increases the probability to start. Almost no significant effects are found regarding parental education, labor market status and living in a large city. Price effects could not be identified, because in Germany prices did not vary during the last decades up to 2002.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) in its series SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research with number 62.

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    Length: 33 p.
    Date of creation: 2007
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    Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp62

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    Keywords: GSOEP; youths; discrete time hazard model; log-logistic duration analysis;

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    1. DeCicca, Philip & Kenkel, Donald & Mathios, Alan, 2000. "Putting Out The Fires: Will Higher Taxes Reduce Youth Smoking?," Working Papers, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics 00-3, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
    2. Jonathan Gruber & Jonathan Zinman, 2000. "Youth Smoking in the U.S.: Evidence and Implications," NBER Working Papers 7780, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Peter Schmidt & Ann Dryden Witte, 1987. "Predicting Criminal Recidivism Using "Split Population" Survival Time Models," NBER Working Papers 2445, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Christian Bantle & John P. Haisken-DeNew, 2002. "Smoke Signals: The Intergenerational Transmission of Smoking Behavior," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 277, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    5. Frank J. Chaloupka & Henry Wechsler, 1995. "Price, Tobacco Control Policies and Smoking Among Young Adults," NBER Working Papers 5012, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Jones, Andrew M, 1989. "A Double-Hurdle Model of Cigarette Consumption," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 4(1), pages 23-39, Jan.-Mar..
    7. Andrew M Jones, 1995. "A microeconometric analysis of smoking in the UK health and lifestyle survey," Working Papers, Centre for Health Economics, University of York 139chedp, Centre for Health Economics, University of York.
    8. Douglas, Stratford & Hariharan, Govind, 1994. "The hazard of starting smoking: Estimates from a split population duration model," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 213-230, July.
    9. David Madden, 2007. "Tobacco taxes and starting and quitting smoking: does the effect differ by education?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(5), pages 613-627.
    10. Martin Forster & Andrew Jones, 2000. "The role of tobacco taxes in starting and quitting smoking: duration analysis of British data," Working Papers, Centre for Health Economics, University of York 176chedp, Centre for Health Economics, University of York.
    11. Frank J. Chaloupka & Michael Grossman, 1996. "Price, Tobacco Control Policies and Youth Smoking," NBER Working Papers 5740, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Douglas, Stratford, 1998. "The Duration of the Smoking Habit," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, Western Economic Association International, vol. 36(1), pages 49-64, January.
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