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New migrants to the cities

New migrants to the cities
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First Published: Sun, Apr 25 2010. 11 50 PM IST

Updated: Sun, Apr 25 2010. 11 50 PM IST
This week we take up the E4 urban consumer segment, formed by households where the chief wage earners are married without children and living in a nuclear family.
The chief wage earners in this segment are school-educated businessmen or skilled workers. This is a much larger segment than the three segments discussed in recent weeks. Comprising 2.08% of urban households in India, this is the 13th largest consumer segment.
However, since these households are young, without children, and are nuclear families with no seniors, the household size is small and this segment forms just 0.72% of the urban population, 20th in size among the 33 segments.
Also See Indicus Analytics Research (Graphic)
Around 238,000 people fall in the E4 segment of nearly 150,000 households; 43% are one-member households with men living alone, their wives residing with their families in other towns or villages. The rest are two-member households, i.e. the couple alone, without any children.
As pointed out last week, the E segments (that correspond to the SEC C/D in the traditional SEC) have the highest heterogeneity, resulting in the highest number of consumer segments. Unlike the last three segments discussed, where the chief wage earners were school-educated businessmen, the E4 segment includes those with similar education levels but who are skilled workers. Also unlike the previous segments where chief wage earners were overwhelmingly self-employed, 60% of them in E4 have regular salaried jobs.
As mentioned in previous segments, this becomes a defining characteristic of the mindset and aspirational levels of the household. With such low levels of education (only 53% of the chief wage earners have finished higher secondary schooling) and with mostly just one earning member in these small households (just 9% of spouses are employed), household income is low, and 94% earn less than Rs3 lakh a year.
Also See E4 Segment (Graphic)
Such low-skilled, low-income households reflect new migrants to a city, with roots and connections running deep in smaller towns and villages. They use some connections from their family network at home to find work in the city. Around 29% of the chief wage earners work in manufacturing, predominantly in small manufacturing firms, and mostly proprietorship in various industries. Wholesale and retail trade is the second most important sector of employment, while public administration and the transport sector each account for 12% of jobs.
Public administration shows up as a dominant sector when regular salaried employment is taken into account. With low education, those earning in this segment would be at the lowest rungs of government jobs. Thirty-two per cent of the chief wage earners in this segment are self-employed—running small shops or kiosks, driving autorickshaws or taxis, etc.
Delhi—a city with a large migrant population—ranks first among all districts in the E4 segment. The 2001 census showed that in terms of proportion of immigrants to total population, Delhi was at the top of the urban agglomerations, with immigrants constituting 16.4% of the total population of Delhi, while Greater Mumbai came in second with 15.1%.
Urban districts that have more than 20,000 households in the E4 segment are Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Thane, Coimbatore, Hyderabad, North 24 Parganas, Kolkata and Surat. There is heterogeneity in household characteristics in these cities, making an impact on the income, expenditure and asset ownership patterns.
For example, among these cities, the top three with the highest share of one-member households are Kolkata (77%), Mumbai (67%) and Surat (59%), while Coimbatore, Bangalore and Hyderabad have the highest share of two-member households, at 85%, 83% and 81%, respectively.
Indicus Analytics Research graphic by Shyamal Banerjee / Mint
E4 Segment graphic by Ahmed Raza Khan / Mint
—Indicus Indian Consumer Spectrum Series-XIX
This series is brought to you by research firm Indicus Analytics Pvt. Ltd.
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First Published: Sun, Apr 25 2010. 11 50 PM IST