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Buying Power report: Blacks spend as economy grows
New 16th edition shows $507 bil in spending

The finding comes from the 16th annual edition of "The Buying Power of Black America" report. In 2009, black households spent an estimated $507 billion in 27 product and services categories. ...

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2010 'Buying Power' report shows black consumers spend as economy improves
New 16th edition shows expenditures rise to $507 billion

African-American consumers are cautiously increasing their spending in some key product categories, even as they continue to make adjustments in a slowly growing economy. The finding comes from the soon to be issued 16th annual edition of "The Buying Power of Black America" report.

In 2009, black households spent an estimated $507 billion in 27 product and services categories. That's an increase of 16.6% over the $435 billion spent in 2008. African-Americans' total earned income for 2009 is estimated at $836 billion.

The report, which is published annually by Target Market News, also contains data that reflect the economic hardships all consumers are facing. There were significant declines in categories -- like food and apparel -- that have routinely shown growth in black consumers' spending from year-to-year.

"These latest shifts in spending habits are vital for marketers to understand," said Ken Smikle, president of Target Market News and editor of the report, "because they represent both opportunities and challenges in the competition for the billions of dollars spent by African-American households. Expenditures between 2007 and 2008 were statistically flat, so black consumers are now making purchases they have long delayed.  At the same time, they re-prioritizing their budgets, and spending more on things that add value to their homes and add to the quality of life."

The median household income for African-Americans dropped by 1.4% in 2009, but because of students going out on their own, and couples that started their lives together, the number of black households grew 4.2%. This increase meant that many household items showed big gains. For example, purchases of appliances rose by 33%, consumer electronics increased 33%, household furnishings climbed 28%, and housewares went up by 37%.

Estimated Expenditures by Black Households - 2009

Apparel Products and Services

$29.3 billion


2.0 billion

Beverages (Alcoholic)

3.0 billion

Beverages (Non-Alcoholic)

2.8 billion


321 million

Cars and Trucks - New & Used

29.1 billion


3.6 billion

Consumer Electronics

6.1 billion


17.3 billion


7.5 billion

Entertainment and Leisure

3.1 billion


65.2 billion


9.6 billion

Health Care

23.6 billion

Households Furnishings & Equipment

16.5 billion


1.1 billion

Housing and Related Charges

203.8 billion


21.3 billion


8.8 billion


8.3 billion

Personal and Professional Services

4.1 billion

Personal Care Products and Services

7.4 billion

Sports and Recreational Equipment

995 million

Telephone Services

18.6 billion

Tobacco Products

3.3 billion

Toys, Games and Pets

3.5 billion

Travel, Transportation and Lodging

6.0 billion

Source: Target Market News, "The Buying Power of Black American - 2010"

"The Buying Power of Black America" is one of the nation's most quoted sources of information on African-American consumer spending. It is used by hundreds of Fortune 1000 corporations, leading advertising agencies, major media companies and research firms.

The report is an analysis of consumer expenditure (CE) data compiled annually by the U.S. Department of Commerce. The CE data is compiled from more than 3,000 black households nationally through dairies and interviews. This information is also used for, among things, computing the Consumer Price Index.

The report provides updated information in five sections:

- Black Income Data
- Purchases in the Top 30 Black Cities
- Expenditure Trends in 26 Product & Services Categories
- The 100-Plus Index of Black vs. White Expenditures
- Demographic Data on the Black Population

The 16th annual report on "The Buying Power of Black America" also includes a preview of findings from the forthcoming 2010 Census report.

Copies of "The Buying Power of Black America" can be purchased from Target Market News for $99 each. For more information call 312-408-1881, or click here to purchase online.






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