New GfK global research reveals that roughly one-third (30%) of US consumers read books “every day or most days” – equal to the average for all 17 countries covered by the study. Another 25% in the US say they read “at least once a week,” and 10% report they “never” read books.
Among all countries in the study, Chinese consumers register the highest level (36%) for reading “every day or most days,” closely followed by Spain and the UK (32% each). However, if the segment is widened to include both daily readers and those who read “at least once a week,” the international average rises to 59%, with China still firmly in the lead (70% of its population), followed by Russia (59%) and Spain (57%).
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High-income households read books more regularly
GfK also found that more than one-third (35%) of US consumers in high-income households say they read books “every or most days,” compared to one-quarter (26%) in low-income homes. In addition, people in low-income are more than twice as likely to say they “never” read books (14% versus 6%).
These US figures closely track GfK’s global averages, with 35% of people in high-income households worldwide saying they read books every or most days, versus 24% in low-income homes. In addition, 10% in low-income homes claim that they “never” read books, compared to 3% for high-income.
Women more likely to be avid book readers
GfK’s research also shows that US women are more likely than men to report reading books on an everyday or “most days” basis (34% for women versus 25% for men). In addition, 12% of US men report saying they never read books, compared to 8% of US women.
Globally, 32% of women report reading books every or most days, compared to 27% of men. This gender gap is the largest in the Netherlands (30% for women versus 14% for men) and Spain (40% versus 25%), followed by Canada (36% women, 23% men) and Germany (31%, 19%).
Download GfK’s complimentary report showing full findings for each of the 17 countries, including breakdown by gender, age groups and income.
About the study
GfK conducted the online survey with over 22,000 consumers aged 15 or older across 17 countries. Fieldwork was completed in summer 2016. Data are weighted to reflect the demographic composition of the online population aged 15+ in each market. Countries covered are Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Russia, South Korea, Spain, UK and USA.
GfK is the trusted source of relevant market and consumer information that enables its clients to make smarter decisions. More than 13,000 market research experts combine their passion with GfK’s long-standing data science experience. This allows GfK to deliver vital global insights matched with local market intelligence from more than 100 countries. By using innovative technologies and data sciences, GfK turns big data into smart data, enabling its clients to improve their competitive edge and enrich consumers’ experiences and choices.
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