Research Revealed: Smokers’ Income Going Up In Smoke
Everybody knows smoking is bad for your health and finances. There are approximately 1.3 billion smokers in the world, making smoking the most well-known, not to mention, costly addiction in the world. So, how does lighting up affect smokers’ income?
Categorised under sin duty, duty on cigarette has been increasing yearly, with the most recent hike being the highest at 14%.
Prior to the announcement of Budget 2014, British American Tobacco (BAT) Malaysia increased the price of its cigarette range earlier this week from RM10.50 to RM12, a whopping RM1.50 in a single hike.
Many smokers in Malaysia are feeling the pinch of the increment. But will this be a big enough push to encourage smokers to quit the habit?
“I don’t think many smokers will be quitting after the price hike. RM1.50 is just not a good enough reason to do it,” said Shirlyn Lee, an event planner who has been smoking for more than five years.
Put out that light
A recent study by two Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta economists, reported in an article on The Daily Mail, found that smoking is not just bad for health and your wallet; it also causes your earnings to shrink.
According to Julie Hotchkiss and Melinda Pitts, smokers earn 20% less than non-smokers but it is not due to the difference in the levels of productivity. People who smoke heavily are no less productive than people who do not smoke at all.
They suggest that the main reason for the pay gap is that non-smokers tend to be more highly educated than smokers.
Burned: Smokers earn less
According to the 2008 Gallup study in the US, 28% of smokers had only high-school education or less and they are likely to be working hourly jobs that do not pay for sick or vacation days.
The study did not find a correlation between the frequency of lighting up and the pay gap. The negative impact on the wages applies equally to both social and heavy smokers.
The study, conducted in the US, also found smokers who quit for more than a year earn an average of 7% more than those who never smoked.
Discipline is the key
When a smoker quits, it demonstrates a strong dose of self-discipline – a trait that can help out someone’s career.
But it isn’t just about earning more. It is also about saving loads of money by kicking the habit of lighting up.
What’s the damage?
Consider this, if you are smoking an average of five packs a week, you are spending RM60 a week and about RM240 (about the price of the latest Grand Theft Auto V game for PlayStation 3) a month, and RM3,128.60 a year!
Perhaps it is time to put out that cigarette for the sake of your finances. This could be the best money saving advice you hear in 2013.