Research paper
 
CC-BY-NC 4.0
 
 

Have higher cigarette taxes in the United States discouraged smoking? A review of data from 1999-2013

 
1
School of Health Sciences,University of Canterbury, New Zealand.
2
Division of Population Health, Health Services Research and Primary Care, University of Manchester, United Kingdom
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2017;3(May):15
Publish date: 2017-05-08
Submission date: 2016-06-25
Final revision date: 2017-04-13
Acceptance date: 2017-04-19
KEYWORDS:
TOPICS:
 
ABSTRACT:
Introduction:
Cigarette smoking continues to be a leading cause of preventable morbidity and premature death in the United States. This study examined the impact of federal and state cigarette excise taxes on adult smoking between 1999 and 2013.

Methods:
Data came from the National Health Interview Survey, Behavioural Risk Factor Surveillance System and Tax Burden on Tobacco. Analyses were done from 1999-2013, 2002- 6 and 2009-13. Associations between cigarette taxes, prices and smoking were examined in several states based on cigarette tax: Missouri and Virginia (low tax), Florida, Nebraska and Nevada (median tax) and New York and Rhode Island (high tax).

Results:
Smoking declined nationally from 22.8% (1999) to 19.0% (2013) with rates falling from 25.7% to 20.5% in men and 21.5% to 15.3% in women. Annual cigarette consumption (in millions) declined from 432,758 to 280,534 and per capita consumption from 1,621 cigarettes (1999) to 894 cigarettes (2013). Smoking declined across age, gender, race/ethnicity, education and poverty level in 2009-13 compared to 2002-6 with large reductions in states with higher cigarette taxes. Negative correlations between cigarette tax and smoking, and positive correlations between cigarette tax and price, were seen.

Conclusions:
Higher cigarette taxes appear to have had a negative impact on smoking in the US. Our data suggest that states with higher cigarette taxes have lower smoking rates than states with lower taxes. Tax measures are however implemented as part of a comprehensive tobacco control package and further research is needed to assess the relative contribution of cigarette tax on smoking reductions in the states examined.

CORRESPONDING AUTHOR:
Ben Musumba Wamamili   
School of Health Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, 8041 New Zealand
 
REFERENCES (47):
1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2014. The Health Consequences of Smoking: 50 Years of Progress. A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health.
2. Xu, X. et al., 2015. Annual Healthcare Spending Attributable to Cigarette Smoking. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 48(3), pp. 326–33. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2014.10.012.
3. CDC, 2008. Smoking-attributable mortality, years of potential life lost, and productivity losses – United States, 2000-2004. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), 57(45), pp. 1226-1228.
4. U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, 1964. Smoking and Health: Report of the Advisory Committee of the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service, Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.
5. Orzechowski and Walker, 2014. Tax Burden on Tobacco: Historical Compilation 2014, Arlington, VA: Orzechowski and Walker.
6. CDC, 2011. Adult Smoking in the US infographic. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/adultsmoking/infographic.html (accessed 6 April 2017).
7. CDC, 2010. State-Specific Prevalence of Cigarette Smoking and Smokeless Tobacco Use Among Adults – United States, 2009. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), 59(43), pp. 1400-1406.
8. King, B. A., Dube, S. R. & Tynan, M. A., 2012. Current Tobacco Use Among Adults in the United States: Findings From the National Adult Tobacco Survey. American Journal of Public Health, 102(11), pp. e93-e100. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2012.301002.
9. Farrelly, M. C., Pechacek, T. F., Thomas, K. Y. & Nelson, D., 2008. The impact of tobacco control programs on adult smoking. American Journal of Public Health, 98(2), pp. 304-309. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2006.106377.
10. International Agency for Research on Cancer, 2011. Effectiveness of Tax and Price Policies for Tobacco Control. IARC Handbooks of Cancer Prevention, Vol. 14. Lyon (France): International Agency for Research on Cancer.
11. World Health Organization, 2009. WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2009: Implementing smoke-free environments, Geneva: World Health Organization.
12. Hu, T.-w., Keeler, T. E., Sung, H.-y. & Barnett, P. G., 1995. The impact of California anti-smoking legislation on cigarette sales, consumption, and prices. Tobacco Control, 4(suppl 1), pp. S34-S38.
13. Morley, C. P. & Pratte, M. A., 2013. State-Level Tobacco Control and Adult Smoking rate in the United States. Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, 19(6), pp. E20-E27. doi:10.1097/phh.0b013e31828000de.
14. Cavazos-Rehg, P. A. et al., 2012. Differential effects of cigarette price changes on adult smoking behaviours. Tobacco Control, 23(2), pp. 113–138. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2012-050517.
15. Sung, H.-Y. et al., 2005. A Major State Tobacco Tax Increase, The Master Settlement Agreement, And Cigarette Consumption: The California Experience. American Journal of Public Health, 95(6), pp. 1030-1035. doi:10.2105/ajph.2004.042697.
16. Chaloupka, F. J., Straif, K. & Leon, M. E., 2010. Effectiveness of tax and price policies in tobacco control. Tobacco Control, 20(3), pp. 235-238. doi:10.1136/tc.2010.039982.
17. Chaloupka, F.J., Yurekli, A. & Fong, G. T., 2012. Tobacco taxes as a tobacco control strategy. Tobacco Control, 21(2), pp. 172–180. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2011-050417.
18. Jha, P., 2000. The economics of global tobacco control. BMJ, 321(7257), pp. 358-361. doi:10.1136/bmj.321.7257.358.
19. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009. Federal and state cigarette excise taxes – United States, 1995-2009. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), 58(19), pp. 524-527.
20. Gilbert, A. & Cornuz, J., 2003. Which are the most effective and cost-effective interventions for tobacco control?, Copenhagen: WHO Regional Office for Europe (Health Evidence Network).
21. CDC, 2015. About the National Health Interview Survey. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nhis/about_nhis.htm (accessed 6 April 2017).
22. CDC, 2014. About BRFSS. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/brfss/about/index.htm. (accessed 6 April 2017).
23. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2000. Reducing Tobacco Use: A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, Georgia: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health.
24. World Health Organization, 2008. WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2008: The MPOWER Package. Geneva, World Health Organization.
25. Institute of Medicine, 2007. Ending the tobacco problem: A blueprint for the nation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
26. Farrelly, M. C., Nimsch, C. T. & James, J., 2003. State Cigarette Excise Taxes: Implications for Revenue and Tax Evasion, Report prepared for the Tobacco Technical Assistance Consortium. Available at: http://www.rti.org/sites/default/files/resources/8742_Excise_Taxes_FR_5-03.pdf. (accessed 6 April 2017).
27. DeCicca, P. & McLeod, L., 2008. Cigarette taxes and older adult smoking: Evidence from recent large tax increases. Journal of Health Economics, 27(4), pp. 918–929. doi:10.1016/j.jhealeco.2007.11.005.
28. Carpenter, C. & Cook, P. J., 2008. Cigarette taxes and youth smoking: New evidence from national, state, and local Youth Risk Behavior Surveys. Journal of Health Economics, 27(2), pp. 287–299. doi:10.1016/j.jhealeco.2007.05.008.
29. Biener, L., Aseltine, R. H., Cohen, B. & Anderka, M., 1998. Reactions of Adult and Teenaged Smokers to the Massachusetts Tobacco Tax. American Journal of Public Health, 88(9), pp. 1389–1391. doi:10.2105/ajph.88.9.1389.
30. Pierce, J. P. et al., 2005. Tobacco industry price-subsidizing promotions may overcome the downward pressure of higher prices on initiation of regular smoking. Health Economics, 14(10), pp. 1061–71. doi:10.1002/hec.990.
31. Farrelly, M. C. & Bray, J. W., 1998. Response to Increases in Cigarette Prices by Race/Ethnicity, Income, and Age Groups – United States, 1976-1993. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), 47(29), pp. 605-609.
32. Jimenez-Ruiz, J. A. et al., 2008. The impact of taxation on tobacco consumption in Mexico. Tobacco Control, 17(2), pp. 105–110. doi:10.1136/tc.2007.021030.
33. Bombard, J. M., Pederson, L. L., Nelson, D. E. & Malarcher, A. M., 2007. Are smokers only using cigarettes? Exploring current polytobacco use among an adult population. Addictive Behaviors, Vol. 32, pp. 2411-2419. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2007.04.001.
34. Backinger, C. L. et al., 2008. Use of other tobacco products among U.S. adult cigarette smokers: Prevalence, trends and correlates. Addictive Behaviors, Vol. 33, pp. 472-489. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2007.10.009.
35. Siahpush, M., McNeill, A., Hammond, D. & Fong, G. T., 2006. Socioeconomic and country variations in knowledge of health risks of tobacco smoking and toxic constituents of smoke: results from the 2002 International Tobacco Control (ITC) Four Country Survey. Tobacco Control, 15(suppl 3), pp. iii65-iii70. doi: 10.1136/tc.2005.013276.
36. Stehr, M., 2005. Cigarette tax avoidance and evasion. Journal of Health Economics, 24(2), pp. 277–297. doi:10.1016/j.jhealeco.2004.08.005.
37. Morris, D. S. & Tynan, M. A., 2012. Fiscal and Policy Implication of Selling Pipe Tobacco for Roll-Your-Own Cigarettes in the United States. PLoS ONE, 7(5): e36487. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0036487.
38. Guindon, G. E., Driezen, P., Chaloupka, F. J. & Fong, G. T., 2013. Cigarette tax avoidance and evasion: Findings from the international tobacco control policy evaluation (ITC) project. Tobacco Control, 23(Suppl 1), pp. i13–22. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2013-051074.
39. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012. Consumption of Cigarettes and Combustible Tobacco – United States, 2000-2011. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), 61(30), pp. 565-569.
40. DeCicca, P., Kenkel, D. & Liu, F., 2013. Excise Tax Avoidance: The Case of State Cigarette Taxes. Journal of Health Economics, 32(6). doi: 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2013.08.005.
41. Shelley, D. et al., 2007. The $5 Man: The Underground Economic Response to a Large Cigarette Tax Increase in New York City. American Journal of Public Health, 97(8), pp. 1483-1488. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2005.079921.
42. Young, D. et al., 2006. Prevalence and attributes of roll-your-own smokers in the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Four Country Survey. Tobacco Control, 15(suppl III), pp. iii76-iii82. doi: 10.1136/tc.2005.013268.
43. Brownell, K. D. & Warner, K. E., 2009. The Perils of Ignoring History: Big Tobacco Played Dirty and Millions Died. How Similar Is Big Food? The Milbank Quarterly, 87(1), pp. 259-294.
44. World Health Organization, 2008. Tobacco Industry Interference with Tobacco Control. Available at: http://www.who.int/tobacco/resources/publications/Tobacco%20Industry%20Interference-FINAL.pdf. (accessed 6 April 2017).
45. Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, 2014. Tobacco-Growing States in the USA, Washington, DC: Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.
46. Chaloupka, F. J., Cummings, K. M., Morley, C. & Horan, J., 2002. Tax, price and cigarette smoking: Evidence from the tobacco documents and implications for tobacco company marketing strategies. Tobacco Control, 11(Supplement 1), pp. i62–72. doi:10.1136/tc.11.suppl_1.i62.
47. Federal Trade Commission, 2015. Federal Trade Commission Cigarette Report for 2012. Washington, DC: Federal Trade Commission.
eISSN:2459-3087