Background\nTo identify demographic and socio-economic factors that are associated with household expenditure on tobacco in Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russian Federation, and Tajikistan.\n\nMethods\nSecondary analysis of the data available through the World Bank Living Standards Monitoring Survey conducted in aforementioned countries in 1995–2000. The role of different variables (e.g. mean age of household members, household area of residence, household size, share of adult males, share of members with high education) in determining household expenditure on tobacco (defined as tobacco expenditure share out of total monthly HH consumption) was assessed by using multiple regression analysis.\n\nResults\nSignificant differences were found between mean expenditure on tobacco between rich and poor – in absolute terms the rich spend significantly more compared with the poor. Poor households devote significantly higher shares of their monthly HH consumption for tobacco products. Shares of adult males were significantly associated with the share of household consumption devoted for tobacco. There was a significant negative association between shares of persons with tertiary education within the HH and shares of monthly household consumption devoted for tobacco products. The correlation between household expenditures on tobacco and alcohol was found to be positive, rather weak, but statistically significant.\n\nConclusion\nGiven the high levels of poverty and high rates of smoking in the New Independent States, these findings have important policy implications. They indicate that the impact and opportunity costs of smoking on household finances are more significant for the poor than for the rich. Any reductions in smoking prevalence within poor households could have a positive economic impact.