One-person households have emerged as big spenders in the South Korean retail market, a poll showed Thursday, helped in part by the lack of major areas of expenditure like child care, a poll showed Thursday.
According to the poll of 500 households by the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI), the percentage of monthly disposable income to the whole monthly income at single households came to 32.9 percent, nearly twice the 17.2 percent for three or four-person households.
Single households' monthly disposable income amounted to 805,000 won (US$755), while that of three or four-person households reached 735,000 won.
The monthly housing expenses of one-person households stood at 406,000 won, an average of about 150,000 won lower than the 555,000 won for three or four-person households.
However, the proportion of housing expenses to monthly income at one-person households was 27.8 percent, 9.3 percentage points higher than 18.5 percent of three or four-person households.
Despite the higher proportion of housing expenses, one-person households can spend more money than three or four-person households as they are free of financial burden of bringing up children or supporting a family, the KCCI said.
Of the one-person households polled, 41.6 percent said they will spend money on travel, followed by self-improvement with 36 percent, other leisure activities with 32.8 percent and health care with 32 percent.
"Companies should thoroughly analyze the characteristics of one-person households' consumption and their lifestyle to develop goods and services to meet their needs," the KCCI said.