The Post-1980 Generation - Chinese Most Materialistic

People born in the 1980s, who are currently at the age between 17 and 26, are viewed as the “post-1980” generation in society. In China, there are 200 million people classified as a member of this group. The post-1980 generation are said to be the main consumption group in society in future, the People's Daily reported.

Under the influences of market economy, globalization, and the Internet, the post-1980 generation display a very different consumption mode from their parents.

Born as the only child in the family, most children in this generation despise tradition and cherish individuality. They like things which are unique and reflect people’s personality. They do things as they like.

Their life is surrounded by ads, posters, video programs and Internet culture, which promote a totally different consumption culture from the past. Under this influence, the younger generation pursue pleasure in life. They like expensive stuff and vie with each other in everything they buy, from food to clothes.

Compared with their parents, who live a frugal life, most people born in the 1980s spend lavishly. They spend all the money they earn, or sometimes overspend. They seldom save money in preparation for their future life.

Needless to say, most young people of this generation have a credit card, which is often overdrawn. Although they don’t make much money, they buy houses or cars with loans from banks. As some banks nowadays issue debit cards on campus, many college students become cardholders, too.

The consumption habits of the post-1980 generation reflect the consumption preferences of people at their age. They are not to be blamed for this. People of this generation is apt to learn new things and skilful at playing with modern equipment. Their fondness for electronic products helps push the development of modern technology. These are all their advantages. On the other hand, as many of the young people have lived a comfortable life since they were born, most don’t save money and spend whenever they want, which is no good for society, said Xia Jianzhong, a professor at the Renmin University of China School of Sociology.

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