Consumer View: Asian-Americans

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Asian-Americans have a higher per capita income than the average for all Americans.

With the Asian-American population growing nearly as fast as that of the Hispanic population, marketers need to take note. According to data released by the Census Bureau in 2006, there were 12.7 million Asian-Americans in 2005, making up roughly 4.3 percent of the U.S. population. Between 2000 and 2005, the Asian population grew 19.8 percent, a growth rate nearly as high as that experienced by Hispanics (20.9 percent).

According to a Packaged Facts report, Asian-Americans have a higher per capita income—7.4 percent higher than the average for all Americans ($25,786 versus $24,020). Asian-Indians rank the highest within the Asian population, with a per capita income of $31,438, followed by Japanese ($31,411) and Chinese ($28,012). All three of these groups have a higher per capita income than non-Hispanic whites. Additionally, Asian-American households and families are more affluent than any other population segment in the U.S.: The median income of Asian-American households is 25.7 percent higher than average ($56,161 versus $44,684) and is roughly 15 percent higher than that of non-Hispanic white households.

Despite high per capita income, Asian-Americans dedicate a higher percentage of income to savings and investments, over conspicuous consumption. Although they have an above-average interest in shopping, seems they are window shoppers or browsers. Further, they are price-driven and, compared to U.S. adults as a whole, are drawn to stores they don't usually frequent due to sales and coupons, will travel an hour or more to factory outlet stores (as they appreciate Western brand names), and will postpone buying until items are on sale.

What's more, Asian-American families with children (which control half of the buying power of the Asian-American market) are even more affluent, with a mean income of $91,531, some 13.7 percent higher than that of non-Hispanic white families and more than double the mean income of Black and Hispanic families with children. Although these Asian-American parents are driven to succeed, there's a conflict of interest in terms of family time. Even though these parents are giving up valuable time with their children, according to Packaged Facts, when they go shopping, they are less likely to indulge their kids with extras.

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