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

Vincenzo Carrieri, Andrew Michael Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


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.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-74
Number of pages4
JournalEconomics Letters
Early online date18 Oct 2016
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016

Bibliographical note

This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details.


  • Electronic-cigarettes
  • Income-related health inequalities
  • Smoking

Cite this