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Smoking for the poor and vaping for the rich? Distributional concerns for novel nicotine delivery systems

Vincenzo Carrieri () and Andrew Jones ()

Economics Letters, 2016, vol. 149, issue C, 71-74

Abstract: We compare income-related inequalities in the use of traditional smoking and of novel nicotine delivery systems (NDS), such as e-cigarettes and other smokeless products, and we apply a regression-based decomposition method for rank-dependent inequality measures to estimate the source of inequalities in the use of NDS. Using data from the 2013 wave of the Health Survey for England, we find that pro-poor inequality is greater for traditional smoking than for smoking and the smokeless products combined. Significant pro-rich inequalities are found in e-cig and other NDS consumption due to higher take-up among richer, younger and better-educated smokers. These patterns might lead to a long-run equilibrium with both higher average health and higher socioeconomic health inequalities.

Keywords: Smoking; Income-related health inequalities; Electronic-cigarettes (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I12 I14 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016
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