If 1964 looked like a sad year for any industry, it was the badly burned U.S.
tobacco business. Sales plunged immediately after the U.S. Surgeon General's report last January linked cigarette smoking to cancer and heart disease.
But the smoker's habit is stronger than his fear. Cigarette sales started to rebound within three months, by last week had returned to the high levels of a year ago and were still on the rise (see chart).
Now the latest earnings reports are as golden as well-cured burley. American Tobacco, P. Lorillard and Philip Morris broke...