Adults in 40s Emerge as Top Apparel Buyers


Adults in the 40 to 49 age bracket emerged as the group with the largest purchasing power in the country's apparel market, said the Korea Federation of Textile Industries (KOFOTI) on Monday.

The association said that due to the recent increases in health consciousness, domestic markets of golf wear mountain-climbing apparel sharply expanded. Adults in their 40s are the major customers.

Industry officials said due to radical increases in the leisure wear market, adults in their 40s surfaced as the consumer group with the most money to spend in the local apparel market, surpassing fashion-conscious young adults in their 20s and 30s.

KOFOTI said it polled 2,500 households nationwide and found that adults in their 40s are estimated to have purchased 2.04 trillion won worth of apparel between January and September last year, accounting for 27.4 percent of the total domestic apparel sales in the first three quarters of 2003.

The age group purchased 1.6 trillion won worth of apparel in the corresponding period of 2000, accounting for 19.6 percent of the total local apparel sales back then, much smaller buying power than the adults in their 30s that accounted for 23.2 percent of the apparel sales.

But the share of the 40 to 49 age bracket constantly increased to 22.2 percent in 2001 and to 27.4 percent in 2002.

Meanwhile, the share of adults in their 20s, which were widely regarded as the prime apparel buyers, fell from 19 percent in 2000 to 6.4 percent in the first three quarters of last year. The share of teenagers also slipped from 9.8 percent in 2000 to 8.8 percent between January and September last year.

The purchasing power of adults in their 30s remained relatively stagnant with their share standing at 23.4 percent in the cited period last year from 23.2 percent in 2000. The share of adults in their 50s and above fell from 18.7 percent in 2000 to 14.8 percent last year.

Source:, March, 2004