Q:

What are various forms of consumer exploitation?

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Quick Answer

Various forms of consumer exploitation include higher commodity prices beyond recommended costs, risk products, adulteration and sub-standard commodities. Other forms of exploitation include false claims about the product’s attributes, breach of warranty and maintenance contract.

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Full Answer

Consumer exploitation refers to the act of taking advantage of buyers. This occurs because of limited information about the product, such as guarantees and terms of purchase. Illiterate consumers are especially vulnerable; consequently, they are likely to be cheated into paying more and even purchasing a counterfeit product. When few manufacturers produce an item, competition is limited, leading producers to determine the price and availability of the product and thereby exploiting the buyer. Limited supplies of a product lead to hoarding and a subsequent boost in prices.

Consumers are entitled to a certain value for their money, including right quality, right quantity, right prices and right information about the product. However, many market giants exploit consumers with malpractices of varying magnitude. Manufacturers make false claims about what a given product does to lure consumers into buying it. Typical examples include the claim that a particular cooking fat is cholesterol-free, or that a particular product can cure baldness in a couple of days. Some manufacturers produce low-quality products, then fail to honor the accompanying warranties in case of a malfunction.

Consumer rights laws protect people who buy goods and services. Consumers can report such cases as faulty products, counterfeit goods, poor service, and problems with contracts and builders.

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