Society’s Newest Influential Segment: Upscale Latinos

Upscale Latinos are the most influential segment since the baby boomers, according to a recent report by Nielsen and the Association of the Hispanic Advertising Agencies.  Defined as Hispanic households earning $50,000 to $100,000 in annual income, this sophisticated market of upscale Latinos will drive shifts in purchasing behavior, brand relationship and category consideration, providing lifetime value and upside opportunities for many high-end, luxury brands.

Upscale LatinoThe report found that 15 million upscale Latinos in the U.S. accounted for 29% of the country’s Hispanic population in 2012, 37% of the group’s total spending power and is expected to double in size by 2050.  It also found that upscale Latinos are younger than upscale non-Hispanic Whites (33 years old compared with 39 years old) and they live active lifestyles, often with young families.

While reading through the report, we found some additional characteristics that we felt were necessary in describing this new age of boomers.

Homeowners and Financially Savvy

The report found that half of upscale Latinos have investments: 86% maintain savings accounts and 50% are more likely to manage their financial accounts from their mobile device.  The report also found that they were more likely to invest in the stock plans their employers provide them.  In fact, they invest more in mutual funds than the total U.S. Hispanic population (21% vs. 16%).

Live in Two Cultures

Upscale Latinos live in two cultures, speaking both English and Spanish. Though upscale Latinos are slightly more English-dominant, their strong cultural duality and bi-cultural behavior is reflected in their media consumption.  More than a third of upscale Latinos watch content in both languages, switching to Spanish-language television for cultural events, concerts and sports.


Upscale Latinos outspend upscale non-Hispanic Whites and Hispanics overall on health and beauty products.  When shopping for alcohol and baby care products, this group steers toward store labels.  They also spend more on fresh ingredients than general U.S. Hispanic population due to the fact that healthy and nutritious food is a priority.

Following the data extracted from this report, marketers now have the opportunity to identify the needs of an evolving upscale Hispanic household.  In addition to building net worth and maintaining a bi-cultural lifestyle, it is apparent that upscale Latinos are fueling the growth of America’s middle class and living the sought after American Dream.

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