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The Hispanic market keeps on buying, even when you throw a recession in its way.

This story appears in the April 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

In the months immediately after September 11, the Hispanic market got a lot of press highlighting its resiliency to recession. The Wall Street Journal, for instance, reported that even with dwindling consumer confidence and retail sales, businesses in heavily Hispanic areas were experiencing sales growth.

But since then, the impact of the economic slowdown has trickled down. "I cannot support the view that Hispanics are 'anti-recessionary,' " says Carlos Santiago, co-founder of Santiago & Valdes Solutions, a San Francisco multicultural marketing consulting firm. Santiago points to reports showing Latino unemployment rates hit 7.6 percent in December due to job loss in the tourism, restaurant, agriculture and textiles industries, as well as layoffs among part-time workers, who, Santiago says, tend to be Hispanic and African American.

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