On Nov. 18, the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, will release DATOS 2009, an annual expert analysis of the role and impact of Latino businesses and consumers on the state’s economy.
For nearly 15 years, DATOS has provided insight into issues ranging from the purchasing power of the Hispanic market to its prevalence in various segments of private industry. This year’s edition again provides detailed information on the Hispanic population’s growing impact on the economy. The report takes months to complete, with research overseen by Louis Olivas, professor emeritus at W.P. Carey.
The following is a summary of the key findings presented in DATOS 2009. The project is funded by SRP.
There are more than 2 million Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States with a combined revenue approaching $465 billion. Arizona is home to more than 35,000 Hispanic-owned businesses.
Nearly two out of every five Hispanic-owned businesses in Arizona is a sole proprietorship and 67 percent are family-owned. More than one-third of Arizona’s Hispanic-owned businesses have annual revenues above $500,000, and the median household income among Arizona’s Hispanic business owners is $76,400.
The purchasing power of the Hispanic market commands attention. In 2008, Hispanics accounted for 8.9 percent of all U.S. buying power, up dramatically from 5 percent in 1990. In total, U.S. Hispanics control $951 billion in spending power, and by 2013 this figure is projected to reach $1.386 trillion. In Arizona, Hispanics account for 16 percent of the total state’s buying power, leading Arizona to rank fourth among all states for its concentrated Latino consumer market.
When it comes to marketing, Hispanic consumers have diverse attitudes. Often, an individual’s language preference is a key determinant in their perceptions of advertisements and products. Understanding more about Hispanics’ household composition, financial resources, homeownership rates, methods of telecommunication and product preferences are all essential to developing loyal consumers. For example, did you know that Latinos nationwide were responsible for buying 297 million movie tickets in the past year, compared to 150 million tickets for African Americans and 155 million for all other ethnicities combined?
The Hispanic population is embracing new media and other technology at a promising rate. Fifty-two percent of the Hispanic population is now online, representing 23 million users nationwide. Internet use is far greater among English-dominant and bilingual Latinos than Spanish-dominant Latinos, suggesting tremendous room for growth. Eight percent of second-generation Latinos and 89 percent of college-educated Latinos go online. In addition to downloading music, uploading photos, and researching products, online news is also popular among Latino Internet users. While online, at least 80 percent said they read the news at least once per month.
Cellular use is also notably high among Latinos. Hispanics are more likely than white non-Hispanics to buy the latest phones, upgrade them faster and use special features. Hispanic adults ages 18-34 use an average of 1,200 cell phone minutes per month, compared to 950 minutes for the general population. They are also more likely to use features such as text messaging and music downloading.
In addition to cell phone use, online social networking is another sign of high social connectedness among Latinos. Forty percent of Hispanics maintain profiles on sites such as MySpace, Facebook or MiGente, a trend that is likely to explode as more Latinos hit their teens and young adulthood.
Arizona contains some major Hispanic media markets. According to Nielsen Media Research, Phoenix ranks eighth for Hispanic TV household markets. Print media is also alive and well in the Hispanic community. The vast majority of Hispanic adults (82 percent) read Hispanic newspapers, and the same proportion pass them on to at least one other person. Among Hispanics aged 25-34, 25 percent have called or visited a store in response to an advertisement.
U.S. Latino Population
As a proportion of total U.S. population growth, Hispanics accounted for 51.6 percent of that growth. This is predominantly the result of births to the existing population rather than immigration; six out of 10 Hispanics were born in the United States. Larger average household size (3.6 for Arizona Hispanics versus 2.7 for all Arizona residents) is another contributing factor.
Over the next four decades, the number of minority workers in the U.S. labor force will grow from 32 percent to 55 percent, with the greatest increase coming from Hispanics. The country as a whole will benefit from the productivity, purchasing power, taxes, and Social Security contributions of Hispanic workers.
Arizona ranks fourth among all states for the largest percentage of Hispanic residents. In 2007, 1.9 million Latinos accounted for 30 percent of Arizona’s total population.
Maricopa County in particular has experienced tremendous growth in the Hispanic population. Between 2000 and 2007, it ranked second (after Los Angeles County) for the largest increase in Hispanic population. Mirroring the nation, the majority of these Arizona Hispanics are U.S.-born (63 percent).
The median age of Hispanics in Arizona is 25, compared to 42 for the white non-Hispanic population, and the median household income is $40,476, compared to $55,554 for the white non-Hispanic population. Given the youthfulness of the Hispanic population, Arizona Latinos are certain to increase in number and purchasing power over the next few decades.
Birth and Fertility
In 2007, Hispanic births accounted for 25 percent of all births in the United States. Teen pregnancy is still a major issue facing the Latino community, but between 1991 and 2004, the birth rate for Hispanic teens fell 21 percent. Clearly, the relative youth of Hispanics will continue to impact future fertility patterns in the United States and Arizona. The Hispanic fertility rate in Arizona exceeds the U.S. Hispanic fertility rate. From 1987 to 2007, the number of Hispanic births in Arizona has increased 211 percent.
The Hispanic population in the United States has increased by 11 million since 2000, and Arizona ranks fourth among states for the largest percentage of Hispanics (30 percent). In the 2008 presidential election, Hispanics voted in record numbers, demonstrating growing civic engagement and a vested interest the country’s future. Specifically, 50 percent of Hispanics turned out to vote, an increase of 2.7 percent from the 2004 presidential election. And Hispanics are voting with their pocketbooks and mouse-clicks as well. Sixty percent of 18- to 34-year-old Latinos and 76 percent of U.S.-born Latinos access the Internet. During a recent 12-month period, the average amount spent online by a Latino in Phoenix was $831.
Hispanics Trend Young
One of the defining characteristics of the Hispanic population is its youthfulness. The median age of Hispanics in the United States was only 27.7 in 2008, compared to 36.8 for the total population. Nearly two-thirds of Hispanics are under the age of 35.
Furthermore, 25 percent of the nation’s children under age 5 are Hispanic. For all children under 18, 44 percent are non-white.
The median age of Hispanics in Arizona is 25, compared to 42 for the white non-Hispanic population. U.S.-born Hispanics’ median age is only 16, which means that half of these native-born Hispanics are not old enough to drive, vote or consume alcohol. However, they will be soon. And they are at a formative stage in their lives when core values and social and consumer habits are being influenced and developed.
Lifetime fertility for Hispanic women has been 45-47 percent higher than for white non-Hispanic women. From 1987 to 2007, the number of Hispanic births in Arizona has increased 211 percent.
Latino Student Population
In the fall of 2008, 416,705 Latino students were enrolled in Arizona’s K-12 system. Hispanics accounted for 86 percent of total growth in school enrollment from 1998 to 2008. According to the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education, by 2017-2018, Hispanic high school graduates in Arizona will exceed the number of white non-Hispanic high school graduates. This phenomenon has already occurred in New Mexico and California, and Arizona is clearly moving toward this milestone.
By the Numbers
- U.S. Hispanics control $951 billion in spending power and by 2013 this figure is projected to reach $1.386 trillion.
- Young Hispanics will grow to be Arizona’s future workers, business owners, consumers, voters and civic leaders.
- Along the way, they will have significant impacts on Arizona’s public education system, arts and culture scene, and economy.
- Hispanics are wired and tech savvy. They already utilize the Internet for shopping, social networking, and news. Their use of new technologies will continue to increase.
- Source: DATOS 2009
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