DP10860 Love conquers all but nicotine; spousal peer effects on the decision to quit smoking

Author(s): Ali Palali, Jan C. van Ours
Publication Date: October 2015
Keyword(s): Causal peer effects, Smoking cessation
JEL(s): i10, i18
Programme Areas: Public Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=10860

If two partners smoke, their quit behavior may be related through correlation in unobserved individual characteristics and common external shocks. However, there may also be a causal effect whereby the quit behavior of one partner is affected by the quit decision of the other partner. We use data on Dutch partnered individuals to study the relevance of such spousal peer effects. After controlling for common unobserved heterogeneity and common external shocks, we find that such spousal peer effects in the decision to quit smoking do not exist. Apparently, love conquers all but nicotine addiction.