Hundreds of millions of people have quit smoking in the past quarter century, but there are still a billion people smoking daily around the world, a new study in the Lancet shows.

Expand chart

Data: The Lancet , GBD 2015 Tobacco Collaborators; Map: Lazaro Gamio / Axios

Why it matters: One in 10 deaths worldwide is now caused by smoking — half of them in just four countries (China, India, Russia and the U.S.) — and smoking-related deaths have gone up nearly 5 percent in the past 25 years as more smokers are now found in under-developed countries where healthcare delivery is limited. Despite serious efforts by the global public health community to stigmatize and delegitimize cigarette smoking over the past three decades, smoking continues to be a leading cause of death and disability around the world.

The good news: Smoking prevalence globally has fallen by nearly one-third since 1990. One in 12 women smoked then compared to one in 20 today, and smoking rates among American teenagers have plummeted in the past 20 years from a high of 36 percent in 1995 (at the advent of the Tobacco Wars) to nearly single digits today.

Go deeper

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 32,471,119 — Total deaths: 987,593 — Total recoveries: 22,374,557Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 7,032,524 — Total deaths: 203,657 — Total recoveries: 2,727,335 — Total tests: 99,483,712Map.
  3. States: "We’re not closing anything going forward": Florida fully lifts COVID restaurant restrictions — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam tests positive for coronavirus.
  4. Health: Young people accounted for 20% of cases this summer.
  5. Business: Coronavirus has made airports happier places The expiration of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance looms.
  6. Education: Where bringing students back to school is most risky.
Mike Allen, author of AM
12 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden pushes unity message in new TV wave

A fresh Joe Biden ad, "New Start," signals an effort by his campaign to make unity a central theme, underscoring a new passage in his stump speech that says he won't be a president just for Democrats but for all Americans.

What he's saying: The ad — which began Friday night, and is a follow-up to "Fresh Start" — draws from a Biden speech earlier in the week in Manitowoc, Wisconsin:

Trump prepares to announce Amy Coney Barrett as Supreme Court replacement

Judge Amy Coney Barrett. Photo: Matt Cashore/Notre Dame University via Reuters

President Trump is preparing to nominate federal appeals court Judge Amy Coney Barrett of Indiana, a favorite of both the social conservative base and Republican elected officials, to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Republican sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Barrett would push the already conservative court further and harder to the right, for decades to come, on the most important issues in American politics — from abortion to the limits of presidential power. If confirmed, she would give conservatives a 6-3 majority on the high court.