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Hispanics becoming formidable economic force

NEW YORK, Nov. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Hispanic households across America will sharply increase both their numbers and economic clout over the next ten years, The Conference Board reports today in a comprehensive new study.

The number of Hispanic households is expected to increase at a faster pace than that of any other group in the United States, continuing a demographic explosion that began several decades ago.

Today's 10 million-plus Hispanic households will soar to 13.5 million by 2010, up from less than 6 million in 1990. These households will control $670 billion in personal income six years from now, with Mexican-American households accounting for $409 billion of this total.

Households hailing from Central and South America will earn $107 billion by 2010, with Puerto Rican households controlling $65 billion. Cuban families will account for $32 billion, with the remaining $56 billion being earned by Spanish, Dominican and other Hispanic households.(The Conference Board study defines "Hispanics" as people whose origin is in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Cuba, South and Central America or other
Hispanic/Latino regions, including Spain and the Dominican Republic,
regardless of race.)

Hispanic households tend to be younger on average than the U.S. population at large. Of the more than 10 million Hispanic households, 38 percent are currently headed by someone under 35, and an additional 25 percent are led by someone between the ages of 35 and 44 (the national average for homes with heads under 35 is 23 percent.) By 2010, the under-45 Hispanic market will increase to 8 million households, and its purchasing power will leap from the current level of less than $295 billion to $397 billion. In other words, $3 out of every $5 flowing to Hispanic households in 2010 will be in the hands of this younger-than-average segment.

A VAST MARKET OPPORTUNITY FOR MANY FIRMS

"As the Hispanic market keeps growing both in size and buying power, companies in a wide variety of industries will enjoy significant marketing opportunities," says Lynn Franco, Director of The Conference Board's Consumer Research Center. "But since this young, burgeoning market is extremely diverse, marketers should be aware of extensive demographic and economic differences among the Hispanic household population."

WHERE THEY ARE:

* At 6.5 million households -- more than 80 percent of which are in the
Pacific, West South Central, and Mountain regions - the Mexican
community is by far the largest Hispanic group. More than 55 percent of
these households include children under 18, and more than two-thirds of
householders are under 45. By 2010, this group is expected to top
8.5 million, with nearly 62 percent of all households headed by someone
under 45. Forecasts indicate that the Mexican population's total
purchasing power will surpass $409 billion by 2010.

* Central and South American households number 1.6 million, representing
the second largest contingent of the Hispanic community. At least
75 percent of these households are concentrated in the Pacific, South
Atlantic, and Middle Atlantic regions. This market is also young -- two
out of three household members are under 45. This group will number
nearly 2 million households by 2010, with 60 percent of households
headed by someone under 45. The purchasing power of Central and South
American households is projected to rise from the current level of
$76 billion to $107 billion.

* Numbering 1.2 million, Puerto Rican households are the third largest
Hispanic group, with more than two-thirds residing in the South Atlantic
and Middle Atlantic regions. While this segment of the Hispanic market
is also quite young, a substantial proportion of the population is over
45. The number of Puerto Rican households will reach 1.5 million by
2010, and almost half of the household heads will be over 45. Current
estimates indicate that aggregate household income for this group will
climb from $46 billion to $65 billion.

* At just over 511,000, Cuban households are the smallest defined segment
of the Hispanic community, with close to three-quarters of the
population located in the South Atlantic region. Persons 55 and older
head a majority of the households. This group's purchasing power is
projected to increase by 45 percent to $32 billion by 2010.

* All other Hispanics account for 757,000 households - with heads under
age 45 making up nearly half of this population. More than 60 percent
live in the Middle Atlantic, Mountain, and Pacific regions. This group
is projected to number 1 million by 2010, and its total purchasing power
will reach $56 billion, an increase of 44 percent.

Source: The Hispanic Market in 2010, The Conference Board
Conference Board Web Site: http://www.conference-board.org

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