Canada's smoking rate falls slightly, down to 17.7 per cent in 2015: StatsCan

A new report suggests fewer Canadians are smoking tobacco.

The Canadian Community Health Survey found 17.7 per cent of Canadians aged 12 and older, or roughly 5.3 million people, smoked either daily or occasionally in 2015, down slightly from 18.1 per cent a year earlier.

The proportion of Canadians who smoked daily or occasionally was higher among males at 20.4 per cent, compared to 15 per cent of females.

The Statistics Canada survey found the number of people who reported being daily smokers fell to 12.6 per cent in 2015, from 13.5 per cent the previous year.

Tobacco use was least common among youth aged 12 to 17, with about four per cent reporting they smoked in 2015, followed by adults 65 or older, at almost 10 per cent.

Males aged 20 to 34 made up the largest proportion of smokers, with more than one in four reporting tobacco use.

The survey found a smoking rate of 24.4 per cent in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Among the other Atlantic provinces, Nova Scotia had a rate of 18.9 per cent while New Brunswick was 17.4 per cent and P-E-I had the second-lowest rate of all provinces at 14.9 per cent, behind B-C.

(With files from The Canadian Press)