U.S. Latino GDP Larger Than All But 7 Nations

Matthew Fienup, right, and Dan Hamilton, left, of Cal Lutheran’s Center for Economic Research and Forecasting in Thousand Oaks.

The total economic output, or Gross Domestic Product, of Latinos in the United States was $2.3 trillion in 2017 – larger than that of seven countries. 

That’s the finding of the 2019 Latino Development Collaborative U.S. Latino GDP Report officially released Sept. 26.  

Researchers from California Lutheran University’s Center for Economic Research and Forecasting in Ventura County and the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine prepared the report.  

Its release started a four-day conference in San Diego, called L’Attitude. It examined the impact of Latinos on the economy and helping businesses tap into it. 

“If the Latino GDP was an independent country, it would have been the eighth largest in the world, ahead of Brazil, Italy, Canada and Russia in 2017,” the report said. 

Other report highlights included: 

  • Among the world’s 10 largest GDPs, the U.S. Latino GDP would be the third fastest-growing. 
  • Personal consumption was the single largest driver of rapid Latino GDP growth from 2010 to 2017. Comparing compound annual growth rates, Latino real consumption grew 72 percent faster than non-Latino consumption over that period. 
  • Latinos are significantly more likely to be actively working or seeking work than non-Latinos. Latino labor force participation is 67.4 percent, 5 percentage points higher than non-Latino participation. 
  • Despite constituting 18 percent of the U.S. population, Latinos are responsible for 82 percent of the growth in the labor force since the (most recent) financial crisis. 
  • The U.S. Latino population is growing six times faster than that of non-Latinos. 
  • From 2007 to 2012, the number of Latino-owned businesses increased by 46 percent while the number of white-owned businesses shrank by 5 percent. 
  • Life expectancy for Latinos is more than three years longer than that of white non-Latinos. 
  • Latinos in poverty are less likely than non-Latinos to use income-transfer programs such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.
  • Authors of the report said, “We expect that the economic growth premium that Latinos enjoy relative to non-Latinos in the U.S. will be maintained in the years ahead, given the population’s strong health profile, robust growth and high labor force participation along with strong increases in educational attainment, income and personal consumption.
  • Posted Sept. 26, 2019.

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