This is freakin' nuts. Four pack a day madness in middle America.
2 packs per day for the patient2 packs per day for the husband.$6/pack.$24/day$168/week$720/month$8,760/year.
That's four packs a day madness. That's enough to take out a 30 year mortgage with a loan of $120,000 at 5% and enough left over to pay for the taxes and home owners insurance.
How much money are they losing to potential investment? Let's assume for the sake of argument that the long term rate of return for your money placed in the stock market is about 10% (the S&P returned an average close to 10%/year) over the last 40 years. Subtract from that the long term CPI average yearly increase of 3%. So let's assume that your post inflation money is gaining 7% per year. How much money will you spend over your career as a professional smoker?
Let's say that the price of a pack of cigarettes only rises 5% a year ( a conservative estimate). How much money could you save up by not spending a four packs a day habit of $8,760 on cigarettes and instead investing it with a post inflation return on average of 7%?
After 10 years? $153, 716
After 20 years? $521,304
After 30 years? $1,277,508
After 40 years? $2,806,917
After 50 years? $5,815,495
This is post inflation dollars (pre tax).
Imagine, if you started smoking, you and your wife, two packs per day, starting at age 25. By 75 years old, had you invested that cigarette money, and made just 7% per year, after inflation, you could have almost 6 million dollars in the bank you could have spent on your family. Instead you smoked four packs a day.