Shares of Altria, which late last year invested $12.8 billion for a 35 percent stake in e-cigarette giant Juul, fell nearly 5 percent. Shares of British American Tobacco traded in the U.S. slid nearly 3 percent. Shares of U.K.-based Imperial Brands traded in the U.S. dipped 4 percent.
Even though the FDA didn't directly blame e-cigarettes, the news won't help the already negative perception surrounding the devices. A study published last week from researchers at Georgia State University found the proportion of adults who think e-cigarettes are as bad as or worse than combustible cigarettes increased substantially over five years.
The news may also spook investors who are already fearing the FDA will tighten e-cigarette restrictions even more as it tries to control what the agency has labeled an "epidemic" of teen vaping.
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