While New York City would be the first in the nation to do this, Bloomberg says prohibitions began to be implemented in Iceland in 2001 and Canada in 2005, and these countries have already seen substantial declines in youth smoking.
"Such displays suggest that smoking is a normal activity," Bloomberg said. "And they invite young people to experiment with tobacco."
Stores devoted primarily to the sale of tobacco products would be exempt from the display ban.
The mayor's office said retail stores could still advertise tobacco products under the legislation.
"We have made tremendous strides in combating smoking in New York City but this leading killer still threatens the health of our children," said Dr. Thomas A. Farley, the health commissioner, "and youth smoking rates have remained flat at 8.5 percent since 2007."
Farley said the city's comprehensive anti-smoking program cut adult smoking rates by nearly a third -- from 21.5 percent in 2002 to 14.8 percent in 2011 -- but the youth rate has remained flat, at 8.5 percent, since 2007.