Market Regulation and Firm Performance: The Case of Smoking Bans in the United Kingdom
This paper analyzes the effects on firms of a ban on smoking in public places. Our empirical strategy relies on comparing outcomes in Scotland before and after the Scottish smoking ban (introduced in March 2006) with those in northern England, where such a ban was not in place. Our analysis of survey data collected from public houses finds that the Scottish smoking ban reduced pub sales with no concomitant effect on prices. An event study analysis of the stock market performance of pub-holding companies corroborates the negative effect of the smoking ban on firm performance.
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