The Association Between E-Cigarette Price and TV Advertising and the Sales of Smokeless Tobacco Products in the USA

Abstract: This study aims to examine how e-cigarette prices and advertising, key determinants of e-cigarette demand, are associated with the demand for smokeless tobacco (SLT) products in the US. Market-level sales and price data by year (2010–2017), quarter, and type of retail store were compiled from Nielsen retail store scanner database. E-cigarette TV advertising ratings data were compiled from Kantar Media. Four-way (market, year, quarter, store type) fixed-effect models were used to estimate the associations between e-cigarette price and TV advertising and sales of SLT products (chewing loose leaf, moist snuff, and snus). Our results showed that a 1% rise in own price was associated with a reduction in sales by 1.8% for chewing loose leaf, 1.6% for moist snuff, and 2.2% for snus, respectively. In addition, a 1% rise in disposable e-cigarette price was associated with 0.3% and 0.6% increased sales for moist snuff and snus, respectively. The association between e-cigarette TV advertising and SLT product sales was not significant. Our results suggest that disposable e-cigarettes and certain SLT products (moist snuff and snus) are potential substitutes. Policies aiming to regulate e-cigarette use and sales need to consider their potential link with the demand for SLT products.

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