Latino Voices

Latino-Owned Businesses Increase And Give Boost to Economic Growth In The U.S.

There's no argument that 2011 was a tough year for Latinos but their might be a light at the end of the tunnel.

Despite a stubborn unemployment rate for Latinos reaching 11.4 percent last month, Hispanic-owned businesses are growing at more than double the national rate, according to reports by the U.S. Census Bureau.

According to Forbes, this trend has been sustained for at least the last decade and manifests itself both in the growing number and size of Latino-owned businesses. During the latest 5-year period for which information is available from the Census Bureau, revenue from Latino owned businesses jumped by an astonishing 55 percent to nearly $350 billion.

"Latino-owned businesses are expected to increase their total revenue contribution to the economy by 8% annually over the 10 years from 2005 to 2015. This is more than three times the average growth for all businesses. Already this trend has had a major impact in states with large Latino populations. For example, more than 20 % of all businesses in New Mexico, Florida and Texas are owned by Latinos, and even in the state with the largest economy, California, the figure is fast approaching 20%."

One example of this trend is Minnesota, which has seen a boom in Latino-owned businesses. The state now has 205,896 residents identified as Latinos, compared to 195,138 one year ago, according to the Census Bureau.

The proud owner of Express Janitorial Services, Jesus Gutierrez, said: "I was an employee a couple years ago, and I got a lot of experience, and in the meantime I decide to be more successful on my own." Gutierrez, a Mexican native, moved to the Midwest to take advantage of the economy. In the last few years, Minnesota has welcomed more than 1,000 new Latino business owners, WDAY reports.

If this trend continues, Hispanics will not only be the fastest growing minority in the U.S. but also have some economic clout in helping to shore up the economy.

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