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 Black Stats          
Frequently requested data on African American consumers

Black Buying Power:
  $803 Billion (2008)

Black U.S. Population:
  41.1 million

Top Five Black Cities
  - New York
  - Chicago
  - Detroit
  - Philadelphia
  - Houston

Top Five Black Metros:
  - New York-New Jersey
  - Washington-Baltimore
  - Chicago-Gary
  - Los Angeles
  - Philadelphia

Top Five Expenditures:
 - Housing $166.3 bil.
 - Food $65.3 bil.
 - Cars/Trucks $31.5 bil.
 - Clothing $26.9 bil.
 - Health Care $23.9 bil.

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Comcast, NBC grilled by Congress on lack of blacks in programming and news

By Richard Prince
Journal-isms

(February 26, 2010) A day after a scolding from black members of Congress about NBC's insufficient diversity, the network Friday declared that "from interviews with political newsmakers to our roundtable discussions, 'Meet the Press' is committed to having a more diverse group of voices on the show whose opinions and expertise reflect, not just the news of the day, but the cultural, economical and political landscape of our country."

This Sunday's guests are to include Marc Morial, the president of the National Urban League who also testified at the congressional hearing, although no journalists of color.

The others are Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.; Nancy-Ann DeParle, director of the White House Office of Health Reform; Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., the Republican whip; Katty Kay, Washington correspondent, BBC World News America and Ron Brownstein, political director of Atlantic Media and columnist, National Journal.

The response to Journal-isms from NBC spokeswoman Jenny Tartikoff came after NBC Universal President Jeff Zucker said Thursday that "Meet the Press" had not done a good enough job of presenting diverse voices over the past decade, but is working to change that, as John Eggerton reported for Broadcasting & Cable. "He also said that while the network has no African-American-targeted show currently on the air, it has increased its investment in casting and script diversity 'dramatically.' 

"Zucker's comments came during tough questioning from Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) at Thursday’s House Judiciary Committee hearing," Eggerton's story continued.

"Waters asked how NBC could not have a single African-American-targeted show currently on the air. Zucker said the network was looking for good shows, wherever they came from, but that 'we have not found that [African-American] show.' When pressed by Waters, he said that NBC is looking for that program, but would give no timeline."

Zucker's comments about "Meet the Press" touched upon an issue that has been a sore point with journalists and newsmakers of color.

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, like Waters a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, told Zucker, "There is no diversity on the Sunday morning talk shows," Paul Harris reported for Variety.

After the National Urban League released a 2005 report, "Sunday Morning Apartheid," its author, Stephanie Jones, met with the show's late host, Tim Russert, and its executive producer, Betsy Fischer. "He was very open and very interested in the study," Jones told Journal-isms. "He had read it. He said they wanted to do better," she said of Russert.

After David Gregory succeeded Russert on Dec. 14, 2008, African Americans appeared on four of the first five shows. Lately, however, the number of blacks on the show as guests has fallen off.

Mark Whitaker, a black journalist, is senior vice president at NBC News and succeeded Russert as chief of the network's Washington bureau.

The occasion for the discussion of NBC's diversity was a hearing on the proposed $30 billion merger of cable giant Comcast and NBC Universal, in which Comcast would have a 51 percent stake in NBC Universal. NBC’s current owner, General Electric Co., would hold the remaining 49 percent.

At one point, Waters asked Jean Prewitt, president of the Independent Film & Television Alliance, who was testifying against the deal, whether her group could help Zucker out so "they are not sitting here in 2010 with no black programs," Joe Flint reported for the Los Angeles Times.

Waters wasn't the only panelist with pointed questions on diversity.

She and Jackson Lee were "armed with lists of board members for both companies,"  Aruna Viswanatha reported for mainjustice.com, and Waters asked Comcast Corp. Chief Executive Officer Brian Roberts why his corporation had only one woman and one black man on its board.

"When you are judged about your sincerity about diversity, it really starts at the top," Waters said.

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 15th Annual Edition
'Buying Power of Black America' report breaks down billions in expenditures

(January 19, 2010) Black consumers are responding to tighter economic condition by focusing more of their spending on items and services that improve their homes and lifestyle. That's one of the trends revealed in the 15th annual report, "The Buying Power of Black America," published by Target Market News. The report analyzes spending for black households in 2008 and finds that African-Americans...
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