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Smoking habit changes and body weight: causal estimates from the British Household Panel Survey

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  • Pieroni, Luca
  • Salmasi, Luca

Abstract

This paper evaluates the causal relationship between smoking and body weight through two waves (2004-2006) of the British Household Panel Survey. We model the effect of changes in smoking habits, such as quitting or reducing, and account for the heterogeneous responses of individuals located at different points of the body mass distribution by quantile regression. We investigate the robustness of our results by means of a large set of control groups and the application of an instrumental variable (IV) estimator. Our results reveal the positive effect of quitting smoking on weight changes, which is also found to increase in the highest quantiles, whereas the decision to reduce smoking does not affect body weight. Lastly, cost-benefit analysis reveals that quitting smoking implies savings for the National Health Service which are much larger than the costs associated with increased obesity.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 43465.

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Date of creation: 10 Dec 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:43465

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Keywords: Body Mass Index; Overweight and Obesity; QTE; Instrumental Variable; Quantile regression;

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  1. Shin-Yi Chou & Michael Grossman & Henry Saffer, 2002. "An Economic Analysis of Adult Obesity: Results from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System," NBER Working Papers 9247, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Cawley, John & Markowitz, Sara & Tauras, John, 2004. "Lighting up and slimming down: the effects of body weight and cigarette prices on adolescent smoking initiation," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 293-311, March.
  3. Emilia Del Bono & Daniela Vuri, 2008. "Job Mobility and the Gender Wage Gap in Italy," CESifo Working Paper Series 2435, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy, 1986. "A Theory of Rational Addiction," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State 41, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  5. Baltagi, Badi H & Griffin, James M, 2001. "The Econometrics of Rational Addiction: The Case of Cigarettes," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 19(4), pages 449-54, October.
  6. Gruber, Jonathan & Frakes, Michael, 2006. "Does falling smoking lead to rising obesity?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 183-197, March.
  7. Courtemanche, Charles, 2009. "Rising cigarette prices and rising obesity: Coincidence or unintended consequence?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 781-798, July.
  8. Orley Ashenfelter & David Card, 1984. "Using the Longitudinal Structure of Earnings to Estimate the Effect of Training Programs," NBER Working Papers 1489, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Pieroni, Luca & Salmasi, Luca, 2012. "Does cigarette smoking affect body weight? causal estimates from the clean indoor air law discontinuity," MPRA Paper 38338, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. David Aristei & Luca Pieroni, 2007. "Habits, Complementarities and Heterogenenity in Alcohol and Tobacco Demand: A Multivariate Dynamic Model," Working Papers, University of Verona, Department of Economics 38, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
  11. James Nonnemaker & Eric Finkelstein & Mark Engelen & Thomas Hoerger & Matthew Farrelly, 2009. "Have Efforts To Reduce Smoking Really Contributed To The Obesity Epidemic?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 47(2), pages 366-376, 04.
  12. Liu, Feng & Zhang, Ning & Cheng, Kai-Wen & Wang, Hua, 2010. "Reduced smoking and rising obesity: Does smoking ban in the workplace matter?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 108(3), pages 249-252, September.
  13. Koenker, Roger W & Bassett, Gilbert, Jr, 1978. "Regression Quantiles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 33-50, January.
  14. Charles L. Baum, 2009. "The effects of cigarette costs on BMI and obesity," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(1), pages 3-19.
  15. Michael T. French & Edward C. Norton & Hai Fang & Johanna Catherine Maclean, 2010. "Alcohol consumption and body weight," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(7), pages 814-832.
  16. Amanda E. Kowalski, 2009. "Censored Quantile Instrumental Variable Estimates of the Price Elasticity of Expenditure on Medical Care," NBER Working Papers 15085, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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