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Does E-Cigarette Advertising Encourage Adult Smokers to Quit?

Dhaval Dave (), Daniel Dench, Michael Grossman (), Donald Kenkel () and Henry Saffer ()

No 24277, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: Only recently introduced into the U.S. market, e-cigarettes have been aggressively promoted, and use is increasing rapidly among both adults and youths. At the heart of the regulatory debate are fundamental questions regarding whether e-cigarettes will draw cigarette smokers away from a dangerous habit or lure new initiates into tobacco use. We provide some of the first causal evidence on whether e-cigarette advertising on television and in magazines (which comprise about 90% of total media spending on e-cigarettes) encourage adult smokers to quit. We find that the answer to this question is a yes for TV advertising but no for magazine advertising. Our results indicate that a policy to ban TV advertising of e-cigarettes would have reduced the number of smokers who quit in the recent past by approximately 3%, resulting in roughly 105,000 fewer quitters in that period. On the other hand, if the FDA were not considering regulations and mandates that would likely eliminate many e-cigarette producers during our sample period, e-cigarette ads might have reached the number of nicotine replacement therapy TV ads during that period. That would have increased the number of smokers who quit by around 10%, resulting in an additional 350,000 quitters.

JEL-codes: I18 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hea and nep-mkt
Date: 2018-02
Note: HE
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