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Smoking initiation and the iron law of demand

  • Lillard, Dean R.
  • Molloy, Eamon
  • Sfekas, Andrew
Registered author(s):

    We show, with three longitudinal datasets, that cigarette taxes and prices affect smoking initiation decisions. Evidence from longitudinal studies is mixed but generally find that initiation does not vary with price or tax. We show that the lack of statistical significance partly results because of limited policy variation in the time periods studied, truncated behavioral windows, or mis-assignment of price and tax rates in retrospective data (which occurs when one has no information about respondents’ prior state or region of residence). Our findings highlight issues relevant to initiation behavior generally, particularly those for which individuals’ responses to policy changes may be noisy or small in magnitude.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167629612001154
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Health Economics.

    Volume (Year): 32 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 114-127

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:32:y:2013:i:1:p:114-127
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505560

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    7. Joseph J. Sabia, 2006. "Does sex education affect adolescent sexual behaviors and health?," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(4), pages 783-802.
    8. Philip DeCicca & Donald Kenkel & Alan Mathios, 2002. "Putting Out the Fires: Will Higher Taxes Reduce the Onset of Youth Smoking?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(1), pages 144-169, February.
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    10. DeCicca, Philip & Kenkel, Don & Mathios, Alan, 2008. "Cigarette taxes and the transition from youth to adult smoking: Smoking initiation, cessation, and participation," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 904-917, July.
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    15. 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, vol. 23(2), pages 293-311, March.
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