DATOS 2008

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DATOS 2008, a report focusing on consumer and business trends among Hispanics in Arizona and across the nation, was released this week. Join ASU Assistant Vice President for Education Partnerships Dr. Loui Olivas and Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Harry Garewal for a discussion about the data.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
Good evening. i'm Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez in for Jose Cardenas. tonight analysis of how hispanics voted in the presidential election and the buying power population and consumer trends for hispanics in arizona and across the nation. a look at the latest information on these topics and more in datos 2008. all this coming up straight ahead on horizonte.

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Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
Good evening and welcome to Horizonte. according to analysis of some exit polls by the pew hispanic center, latinos voted for democrat barack obama and joe biden over republican john mccain and sarah palin by a margin of more than two to one in the 2008 presidential election. with a history of low voter turnout at the polls, hispanics came out in record numbers to vote this year. Joining me to talk about the latino vote is Dr. Rodolfo Espino, an assistant professor with ASU's political science department. thank you, dr. espino for joining us.

Rodolfo Espino:
thank you for having me.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
interesting election this year. exit polls show, two-thirds of hispanics voted for barack obama, passing the 53% who voted for democrat john kerry in 2004. what happened to the party base in all of this?

Rodolfo Espino
Well, you know, one thing to keep in mind is the comparison to 2004. there was a dramatic shift of hispanic voters voting for the democratic candidate in 2008 compared to 2004. the reason that's important, there was a lot of discussion during the democratic primary earlier this year whether hispanic candidates -- or hispanic voters would shift their allegiance from hillary clinton to barack obama. and at the end of the day what we saw last week is in fact they did. the party loyalty trumped any suspicions of racial animosity between african americans and latinos.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
Now, did barack obama capitalize in any way with the disappointment with president bush, with what's happened in the last now for eight years?

Rodolfo Espino
Absolutely. a lot of the message that he was sending out that his was a campaign of change and he was going to bring change with respect to improving the economy, creating more job growth. this is something that appealed to hispanic voters but not just to hispanic voters. they shared concerns with all other americans. that was the economy the economy the economy.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
Now, there were some notable demographic shifts in this election away from the republican party, among young people. let's start with the college students. that was very noticeable during this election.

Rodolfo Espino
Yeah. there was -- again we want to compare it to 2004 and 2000. there was an increase in the number of young college voters. -- turning out on election day last week. but it did not surpass their share of the voting electorate in 2004 and 2000. so the same things that motivated young voters to go to the polls also motivated their parents and grandparents to go to the polls. what was noticeable about that group compared to 04 was more of them voted for the democratic candidate in 2008 than in 2004.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
Now, when did that trend start in did it start early when perhaps the democratic party started coming out with their candidates, did it happen during the primary sessions? when did the college students come out and say, hey, let's get involved.

Rodolfo Espino
Definitely during the democratic primary campaigns. and i think you have to give a lot of kudos to the barack obama campaign, his handlers to seeing that and investing a lot of resources early on to targeting those voters. there is a risk in targeting first-time voters, especially those young voters because there's not always the guarantee they will turn out to vote. they require a lot more resources, a lot more hand holding if you will to get them registered and show them where their poll is and get them to the polls and remind them this is election day and what your ballot is going to look like. remember to cast a vote for our candidate.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
In the primaries there was also a lot of use of technology, the internet.

Rodolfo Espino
Yes.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
How did that play a role in all that?

Rodolfo Espino
For the young voters it mattered more than any other demographic group. i think again barack obama was ahead of the game compared to any candidates we've seen up to this point, using such things as face book or my space to reach out to the voters and text messages. text messaging announcements. the joe biden announcement was sent a text message. a lot of the young voters were ahead of the media pundits of getting that information.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
Let's get into the hispanic population. let's start nationally. there was a huge shift there.

Rodolfo Espino
Yes.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
They had said in 2000 and in 2004 the latino vote is going to make that difference. but it did not really happen until the 2008 election. why was that?

Rodolfo Espino
Well, it's because of electoral college, right? barack obama's candidacy shifted the electoral college map to many of these red, purple states, especially in the southwest, where hispanic voters have been waiting, waiting to make the difference in some of these states. and they did make the difference in some states, new mexico, colorado, nevada, some of our neighboring states. and that's where we can -- we can get into some arguments was it hispanic voters, young voters religious voters. at the end of the day you have to recognize not only did hispanic voters shift but all voters in all demographics shifted towards barack obama.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
You're saying there was a wave of voters that decided i'm really going to participate and within that wave included the latino population.

Rodolfo Espino
Yes.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
How about young versus older latino voters?

Rodolfo Espino
Well, the trend that we see for the whole population at large also exists for within the hispanic voters is that younger hispanic voters broke more heavily for barack obama than did older hispanic voters. but even the older hispanic votes broke mere heavily for barack obama than did older white voters.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
Now, would you say that they broke from that because of the economic issue as you were saying earlier? or was there something else at play? because latino voters tend to be a little more conservative and sometimes don't go out and vote.

Rodolfo Espino
Yeah. i think they broke primarily i think is the economy but also because of a lot of the messages that republican party had been sending over the last two to four years over immigration and demagoging towards the hispanic community. and that turned off a lot of hispanic voters. if there was any republican candidate that had a chance of keeping hispanic voters in the republican column it was john mccain but he was not able to fight the tide that failed economy and also the demagoguery coming from the republican party over the last two to four years.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
You mean the connection to the Bush administration?

Rodolfo Espino
Yes. yes.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
Which is something obama played on.

Rodolfo Espino
Absolutely.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
Talking about what they played on, health care, the economy played a very big role in this election. how about immigration? it wasn't talked about too much.

Rodolfo Espino
No, it wasn't. part of that was owed to john mccain's candidacy. we have to back up several years to remember that john mccain was the republican candidate in the senate that was pushing for comprehensive immigration reform with that liberal lion, ted kennedy. and so again when i said earlier that if there was any republican candidate that stood a chance of holding the hispanic inroads that george bush made in 2004 it was john mccain. but it was not enough because of a lot of the things that fellow republicans of john mccain had been saying towards the hispanic community and comprehensive immigration reform. but again at the end of the day immigration was not the primary concern for the average voter, let alone for hispanic voters.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
Let's talk about the local election.

Rodolfo Espino
Yes.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
There was a lot of talk during a few weeks prior to that, they were hoping -- the democrats were hoping to take a little control now of the legislature. and it did not happen. what happened? if the Democrats were leading nationally, were taking up seats, what happened to arizona that just didn't go with that wind?

Rodolfo Espino
Well, the failure i think to build a strong ground game here in arizona that we saw going on in some of these battleground states that we saw maybe going on in our neighboring states such as nevada, colorado, new mexico, building the ground game on barack Obama's coattails. and that did not happen here in arizona. and i think it's just conjecture on my part, but that Democrats took some things for granted that they just assumed that the wind was at their back because of the failing economy and they could ride barack Obama's coattails. but that's not enough. you have to reach out to voters, you have to knock on their doors and make phone calls.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
There was a time where a couple weeks prior to the election arizona was pretty tight in relation to the presidential race.

Rodolfo Espino
Right.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
Where Obama was really just 2% behind John McCain.

Rodolfo Espino
Yeah.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
How could that have happened in his own home turf?

Rodolfo Espino
Well, again, it was the economy. voters are really concerned about the economy across the country and here in arizona.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
But the gap at the end of it.

Rodolfo Espino
At the end. but part of that was because of the failure of Barack Obama to put a ground game into play and also for the local democratic party to put a ground game into play. at the end those polls, the tightening of the polls inspired barack obama to put some advertising just over the air to try to close that gap and maybe take arizona into his column. however, if you don't have a ground game in a state like Arizona or north dakota or montana, no matter how much money you're going to put in over the airwaves it's not going to bring the arizona voters into you.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
It's going to be interesting. we should see the next election because it seems that nothing is just -- could be taken for granted by either party.

Rodolfo Espino
No. no. no. we're changing just like the rest of the country.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez::
Well, thank you so much, Dr. Espino, for joining us this evening. i appreciate it.

Rodolfo Espino
Thank you.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez
The Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Salt River Project, s.r.p., just released Datos 2008. the focus of the report is to provide the latest comprehensive information on the latest hispanic market and how it has grown and changed in the past 13 years. mike sauceda tells us about some highlights in the year's study.

Mike Sauceda:
Nationally, the latino population increases by about 1 million persons per year. this is according to datos 2008. datos is the arizona based hispanic remuch that provides resources. it focuses on arizona's hispanic market. it reveals that latinos and their purchasing power continue to grow in record numbers. according to the u.s. census bureau there are about 1.8 million latinos in arizona, ranking arizona the sixth largest hispanic population in the nation. this year's datos study shows that of a total arizona latino population over more than half a million are 15-years of age or younger. the study goes on to indicate that birth, not immigration, currently accounts for most of the hispanic growth nationally. datos reveals a few other facts about the hispanic population in arizona. the median age is 25.5 years of age. the median income for span bics is just over $37,000 and the average hispanic household size is 3.6. in the past 10 years hispanic students account for two-thirds of total public school enrollment growth in arizona. the study goes on to show that because of their relatively large household size, latino spend something quite substantial. datos shows that arizona hispanics spend about $28 billion in goods and services with a total of $17 billion listed for maricopa county alone. the study goes on to show that a large portion of the hispanic expenditure goes towards groceries, shoes and clothing, housing and telephone service. datos 2008 indicates that force behind hispanic purchasing power is attributed to increased employment rates, population growth and increased access to financial services and credit. datos also provides one key insight to this ethnic group: latino are loyal consumers if tapped correctly. the study indicates that hispanics like to shop in places that remind them of home. they tend to make shopping a family affair and try to stay close to their loved ones living a distance away. In other words, everything they do and purchase is about family, family and family.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Joining us tonight to talk more about Datos 2008 is President and C.E.O for the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Harry Garewal. also here is Dr. Louis Olivas, Assistant Vice-President for Education Partnerships - gentlemen, thank you very much for joining us. 13 years, datos has been known to be something out of the hispanic chamber of commerce. who has participated in this study?

Harry Garewal:
Well, you know, first of all, salt river project was our partner, our sponsoring partner this year. and the study was really conducted by the students at arizona state university, w.p. carey. they've done a great job for all those years. and as a result of that when they brought the data to us, you know, they bring us about a -- i don't know, like a 6-inch binder when we started off. we start at breakfast and we end at lunch and we pare it down to what we put into the publication. so the students did a great job in going out and collecting the data for us.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
What is the goal of datos? you've done it for 13 years. every year you bring something interesting and new about the latino population in arizona and nationally. what is the ultimate goal when someone reads this?

Harry Garewal:
It's really to be able to educate the consumer on the significance of what the hispanic community is contributing. a lot of times when we look at the data and the statistics we think about fertility rates and all those things. and dr. olivas does a great job in his presentation. the thing they think is really important and most people miss is the fact that this is really about consumers. the contributions that hispanics make not only to the retail business but also in the taxes that are paid from sales tax revenues. and purchasing appliances and homes and other kinds of product or services. but in addition to that, how they contribute to the labor force, how we're able to go out and really significantly improve the overall economics for the state of arizona. so the real objective and goal of datos is to be able to educate, you know, the non-hispanic community on the contributions that the hispanic community makes overall but also that it's going to be the community that will helping the state of arizona to continue to grow and flourish in the future.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Who benefits most from a study like this? who gains the most? you mentioned the community at large, but it's a lot of detailed information. who benefits most?

Harry Garewal:
Primarily it's those businesses or companies who want to be able to get into the market, the hispanic market. when you sit down and you assess the hispanic businesses and the products, the is services that we consume, most of the time folks just don't know how to get into that market. and so it's those that are interested in being able to pick up market share from the hispanic community. and are willing to come in and learn how to be able to penetrate that market.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Now, dr. o, how is all this information gathered? it's an awful lot like i mentioned in very detailed.

Loui Olivos:
It's a very fun process for me to go through. i gather a team of students, 3 undergraduate and three graduate students. in january each and every year i bring them the report and say, make this obsolete. i turn them loose. and for six or seven months they're out there mining the data, all secondary resources. nothing primary, meaning nothing original in this research. but everything that's existing in every venue. from periodicals to journals to reports to the census to the national journal for vital statistics they mine the data. and we brake it down into sets, into outlines and as harry indicated, we provide the datos committee a volume of information and let them pick and choose.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Let's start with some of the data. birth rates. that's one of the things that stood out in this study. tell us a little bit what you found out about that.

Loui Olivas:
It's about birth and fertility. if you can take a look at trends in fertility you can project population projections. for the last 10 years, every population sector in america has been below the replenishment rate of 2.1 except for the hispanic population that's been at about 2.9. that means that a generation, if you're below 2.1, will not continue. that's true of every population and projections on who will not continue with that replenishment, natural birth to death, except for the hispanic population. and by the way, the hispanic births and fertility rate in the united states is lower than that of mexico.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Really? now, you also get into the young -- what you had mentioned in your study, the single young latino. who is that?

Loui Olivos:
That's the 18 to 34 years of age latino and latina. as they join the public sector, the private sector, as they're coming out of colleges, universities, as they're coming out of high schools ready for employment, these are consumers and they are producers both and they wield an incredible style and power and culture and they determine from a cultural perspective the music, the seances, who they listen to in music, purchasing of food and a variety. very multicultural. the students don't understand what color is about. they understand cultures and are very accepting of those cultures across the world.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
You talk about education, the college graduates. how is the work force in your study? what did you find in your study in that area?

Loui Olivas:
It's bimodal. a very aging baby boomer population included living out of the -- moving out of the employment sector into the retirement. to dominantly not white hispanic on the end. on the opposite is a very young growing minority population led by the latino population and the population projections are through the department of labor on or before 2039, the majority of the workers age 18-64 will be minority supporting a predominantly white non hispanic population through taxation and social security benefits and paying into social security.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Harry, what about Hispanic households? it said in the report that the average household size is 3.2. tell us a little bit more about where that stands and what does that mean long-term?

Harry Garewal:
Well, let me just first say that i'm probable one of the best statistics you'll find. my son just had his seventh child so we have seven grandchildren. so we are living the statistics. and i think that's really reflective of our community and our culture. you know, so when you think about that, this is the future work force. this is the future, you know, consume -- consumer who is i'm going to be here. so when you think about that number it really is reflective of what's going to be happening in the future for the state of arizona. so as we're talking about 39.1, i think it's -- 3.1, closer to 4 children per family, that's really where the growth potentials and the opportunities are coming from.. from that birth rate of the hispanic community.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
One of the other interesting things that i found about your report was the school enrollment rate. and we talked about that very briefly also in the report. that the number of latino students continue to grow in schools, which is kindergarten through k. explain that a little bit more for us.

Loui Olivas:
Two perspective the. first in the united states, k-12 in america, since the year 2000 white non-hispanic students have been decreasing in enrollment. the black student population as of 2004 starts to decrease in enrollment. the only increase in enrollment are the hispanics students k-12. as a matter of fact, from 2000 to 2006, white non-hispanic students lost 1.2 million in enrollment. but it was offset by the 1.7 million in enrollment by the hispanic student population nationally. what does that mean? it means you're not closing schools, you're not laying off teachers, folks aren't losing their jobs, they're not losing their homes, they're purchasing goods and services. in arizona for the last 10 years, fall '97 to fall 2007, we gained an incredible 600,000 plus students. of that, two-thirds of that net gain in k-12 in arizona came from the hispanic student population that continues to grow, are young. you can picture when you have these things in the schools they are consumers of food, goods, services, cell phone, clothing, you name it. and that is an economic gain and benefit to the state of arizona because we're an increasing population. as a matter of fact, in today's schools, k-12 in arizona, the majority are minority student populations.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
What stood out, dr. o, in this report that you put out in 2008? anything different than in years past? any new trends? anything that you can look at and say, this is where the hispanic is going to expand, not just grow in population but in any other way?

Loui Olivas:
Two things stand out: the incredible increase in purchasing power going with the increasing purchasing power of the general population but five times that of the hispanic population. corporations understand one color, it's green, if you know. so the purchasing power is incredible, almost at 900 billion. in arizona alone you're looking at 28 billion for the hispanic population. number two, the trajectory of what will happen. and i like to tell people it's not a prophecy, it's about mathematics. what happened 20 years ago and this natural birth to death increase on birth and fertility, and the population gains since 2000, 10 million hispanics have been added to america by natural birth. so for the state of arizona, we will eventually have come into a full circle as i like to call. because prior to becoming a state in 1912, this was mexico. it was predominantly mexican. they were called hispanic. so on or before 2034-35, this state in its population -- in 2035 this state in its population will be hispanic. vibrant economic community, purchasing growth and purchasing power. the future in my opinion in this state lies in that minority population led by hispanics.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
What did you find on technology? with all this young group that you're speaking of, what did you find new and interesting about technology?

Loui Olivas:
We're indexing in all 10 major categories, in texting one another, in the purchasing of c.d.s, movie theater, tickets, travel c.d.'s. the over index, in other words for every $100 you're spending in general market, the hispanics are spending approximately $175. that's an incredible mix for those producers for valuables, goods and services. technically very savvy. gaining in percent in millions on websites. and by the way, the majority of the hispanic population look to main frame websites like google and yahoo! that's where they go to for information and for the purchasing of goods and services.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
What message is there in this report for those that service the latino community or could potential done that before --

Loui Olivas:
Number one understand this community. what is it that they bring from a consumer perspective. number two, understand their behavior. number three, be involved with that community so they understand who you are, appreciate the goods or services that you're providing. even eventually when you hook their heart you'll hook their mind.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Are there companies who are tapping into this information and using it? because it seems as though there are some companies that tap into it but possibly not enough. would you say that could be the case?

Harry garewal:
Absolutely. in fact, you know, today we had a new segment in datos. we had a breakout session where we had a representative from pepsico who spoke about the actual applications of understanding the market and how to be able to penetrate it. we also had hector paracentia from qwest who was talking about from their perspective of how to go out and market. and we also had lisa rijas, p.r., who was helping folks to be able to get into that market. we also had a raul yzaguirre who sits on the advisory board for pepsico but was speaking on the community side of it and how you can go out and get into the market. so there was a tremendous amount of interest from lots of different companies who were there. the majority of folks that were at the breakfast this morning really weren't even from the hispanic segment. they were wanting to learn how to get into that.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
About the community. real quick we have a few seconds. but you're going green with datos.

Harry Garewal:
We are. in the past we've always published the datos hard publication. this year we did a very limited amount of the c.d.s. and we'll be putting these out. and then next year we'll be transitioning more. one of the interesting side bars to that was people were concerned. well, datos is going to be spread out around electronically. as long as they give us the credit for it, it really doesn't matter to us because it will help our community. it will help businesses to be able to identify how to get into that market.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
And that information is on your web site?

Harry Garewal:
Absolutely.

Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez :
Perfect. thank you so much both of you for joining us and again for sharing this with horizonte. we appreciate it. thank you for joining us. i'm Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez. for all of us from Horizonte, Buenos noches.

Harry Garewal :President and C.E.O., Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce;

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