U.S. Census Bureau Kicks Off National Hispanic Heritage Month by Releasing Key Statistics on Nation's Hispanic Population


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U.S. Census Bureau Graphic on Hispanic-Owned Businesses in the U.S.
U.S. Census Bureau Graphic on Hispanic-Owned Businesses in the U.S.

In September 1968, Congress authorized President Lyndon B. Johnson to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage Week, observed during the week that included Sept. 15 and Sept. 16. In 1989, Congress expanded the observance to a month-long celebration (Sept. 15-Oct. 15) of the culture and traditions of those who trace their roots to Spain, Mexico and the Spanish-speaking nations of Central America, South America and the Caribbean.

Sept. 15 is the starting point for the celebration because it is the anniversary of independence of five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on Sept. 16 and Sept. 18, respectively. 

Marking the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month, the U.S. Census Bureau compiled an array of statistics on our nation's Hispanic population and Hispanic-owned businesses. 

56.6 million 

The Hispanic population of the United States as of July 1, 2015, making people of Hispanic origin the nation’s largest ethnic or racial minority. Hispanics constituted 17.6 percent of the nation’s total population.

1.2 million

The number of Hispanics added to the nation’s population between July 1, 2014, and July 1, 2015. This number is nearly half of the approximately 2.5 million people added to the nation’s total population during this period.

119 million 

The projected Hispanic population of the United States in 2060. According to this projection, the Hispanic population will constitute 28.6 percent of the nation’s population by that date.


The percentage of the Hispanic population in the United States that lived in California, Florida and Texas as of July 1, 2015.

3.3 million

Estimated number of Hispanic-owned firms nationally in 2012, up from 2.3 million or 46.3 percent from 2007.

$78.7 million 

The estimated sales/receipts reported by Hispanic firms owned by women in 2012. Male-owned Hispanic firms reported sales of $359.1 million.    

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Last updated: 2016-09-16 10:32

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