New terms are constantly being created to label demographic groups, often by marketers wanting to target them. These terms are commonly formed using acronyms – as in the examples dinky (dual income no kids yet), kippers (kids in parents pockets eroding retirement savings) or, at the other extreme, SKI-ers (people who ‘spend the kids’ inheritance’). A recent coinage by market analysts at HSBC bank is yummy, for ‘young urban males’, to describe men in their 20s who have plenty of disposable income to spend on designer clothes and accessories, and in areas of the market more traditionally associated with women, such as dieting and grooming. The yummy is closely related to the metrosexual – a word now 20 years old – although social commentators like Kevin Roose, of nymag.com, say today’s yummies are more mainstream, and therefore more economically significant. An earlier predecessor is the yuppy (young urban professional) or yumpie (young upwardly mobile person). These labels were originally applied to a youthful demographic whose votes were being sought by politicians, although they soon became associated with certain fashion styles, too. Given young people’s apparent disaffection with politics, it will be interesting to see if the yummy vote becomes a crucial factor in the current election.
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