Bhai_Moiz.pdf (1.27 MB)
Download file

The Spillover Effects of Smoking

Download (1.27 MB)
posted on 19.10.2016, 00:00 authored by Moiz Bhai
In this thesis, I explore the spillover effects of smoking. In the first chapter, I examine the labor market effects of smoking. Earnings comparisons between smokers vis-à-vis non-smokers consistently show that smokers tend to earn less. Understanding the causes of these earnings differences has been challenging. I use twins and sibling models to reduce concerns of unobserved heterogeneity in the decision to smoke. Then, I estimate the effect of smoking on earnings and disentangle the earnings loss arising from differential productivity due to addiction and differences in earnings due to employer provided health insurance. Overall, I find smokers earn less than non-smokers and employer supplied health insurance is one causal pathway that contributes to the difference. In the next chapter, I continue to examine spillovers and investigate intergenerational spillovers arising from smoking. I exploit exogenous variation in state cigarette taxes to estimate the causal impact of in-utero smoke exposure on multiple measures of children’s well-being such as asthma, severity of asthma, and health status. I find an economically and statistically significant reduction in asthma rates. A one-dollar increase in state excise taxes reduces the prevalence of asthma by 1.7 percentage points with larger reductions for non-white children and children from poorer households.



Chaloupka, Frank J.



Degree Grantor

University of Illinois at Chicago

Degree Level


Committee Member

Feigenberg, Ben Lubotsky, Darren McCloskey, Deirdre

Submitted date




Issue date


Usage metrics