New report: Tobacco industry spends nearly $1 million per hour marketing tobacco products
The amount of money the largest tobacco companies spend on marketing and promoting their products in the U.S. has reached $940,000 per hour, according to the latest data from the Federal Trade Commission reports on cigarettes and smokeless tobacco.
The reports, released last week, show that tobacco industry spending on cigarette advertising and promotion rose from $8.03 billion in 2014 to $8.24 billion in 2015. The amount of money spent on marketing smokeless tobacco products hit $684.9 million in 2015, up 14 percent from the previous year.
As with every year since 2002, discounts paid to tobacco retailers and wholesalers made up the overwhelming majority of marketing expenses. The tobacco industry spent nearly $7 billion on discounts in 2015, which is about a 3 percent increase from the year before and over 84 percent of the industry’s entire marketing budget.
Discounts can counteract the impact of tobacco price increases and taxes, which are some of the most effective ways to reduce smoking rates.