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An empirical investigation of the social market for cigarettes

  • Brett Katzman

    (Kennesaw State University, USA)

  • Sara Markowitz

    (Rutgers University, Newark and National Bureau of Economic Research, NJ, USA)

  • Kerry Anne McGeary

    (Drexel University, USA)

A major characteristic of teenage smoking is the ability to 'bum' cigarettes from peers. To date, research into the determinants of teenage smoking has largely ignored the effects of this social market on the smoking decisions of teenagers. In this paper, we estimate the demand for cigarettes using data from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey which distinguishes teens who primarily buy cigarettes from those who primarily borrow cigarettes. Our results demonstrate the ways in which higher cigarette prices and restrictions on smoking influence not only a teen's decision to smoke and the quantity of cigarettes smoked, but also the manner in which cigarettes are acquired. We show that current cigarette regulations are ineffective in reaching the group of light smokers who primarily obtain cigarettes through the social market, thus indicating that alternative measures should be explored in an effort to reduce the number of smokers in the future. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/hec.1215
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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Health Economics.

Volume (Year): 16 (2007)
Issue (Month): 10 ()
Pages: 1025-1039

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Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:16:y:2007:i:10:p:1025-1039
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/jhome/5749

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  1. Lewit, Eugene M & Coate, Douglas & Grossman, Michael, 1981. "The Effects of Government Regulation on Teenage Smoking," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 545-69, December.
  2. Frank J. Chaloupka & Kenneth E. Warner, 1999. "The Economics of Smoking," NBER Working Papers 7047, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Kent Smetters & Jennifer Gravelle, 2001. "The Exchange Theory of Teenage Smoking and the Counterproductiveness of Moderate Regulation," NBER Working Papers 8262, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Jonathan Gruber, 2000. "Youth Smoking in the U.S.: Prices and Policies," NBER Working Papers 7506, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Martin Forster & Andrew M. Jones, . "The role of tobacco taxes in starting and quitting smoking," Discussion Papers 00/51, Department of Economics, University of York.
  6. Wasserman, Jeffrey & Manning, Willard G. & Newhouse, Joseph P. & Winkler, John D., 1991. "The effects of excise taxes and regulations on cigarette smoking," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 43-64, May.
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