New York - A recent study by the International Trademark Association (INTA) analysing the purchasing behaviours of Generation Z – people aged between 18 and 23 – has found that affordability trumps morality when it comes to counterfeits.

The study surveyed hundreds of consumers within the Gen Z generation across Argentina, China, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, and the U.S.

Almost 80 percent of Gen Z shoppers bought counterfeits in the past year

INTA’s report reveals that while 48 percent of respondents didn’t think it was okay to buy counterfeits, 57 percent said they had done so because they could only afford the fake version of some brands.

It’s worth highlighting that almost half of respondents said their income influences their opinions about counterfeit products, while 37 percent cited morals. That said, still 79 percent of the Gen Zers surveyed said they bought fake goods in the 12 months prior to the study in November 2018.

Commenting on the results, Jaqueline Mai of Insight Strategy Group, which led the study on behalf of INTA, said that this was a case of “situational morality, where strong morals are tested by the lack of income.”

Nigeria and Argetina, at the forefront of counterfeit purchases

The highest rates of counterfeit purchases were seen in Nigeria (97 percent), followed by Argentina and India (89 percent each), and China (84 percent), with Japan coming in at the bottom at 46 percent.

According to INTA, one interpretation of the study is that Gen Zers may be more open to educational messages about the harm caused by counterfeiting, as they tend to gravitate towards brands that share their own morals and values.

On the other hand, members of Gen Z tend to accept counterfeit products that are of high quality and affordable – perceived as ‘replicas’ – rather than low-quality fakes as they believe these allow them to express their individuality. 81 percent said the brand name is not as important as how a product fits their needs, add from INTA in a corporate release.


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