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Culture Code for Money: The Insider’s Guide

Hispanics represent over $1 trillion in household disposable income. It’s time to understand their culture code for Money. This article covers: the definition of culture codes and biculturalism; the code for money for American, Latin American and Hispanic American markets, its affect on marketing to financial and banking industry products; and a suggested segmentation of the U.S. Hispanic market for this particular industry.

Culture Code for Money - The Insider’s Guide

Culture Code for Money – The Insider’s Guide

Besides their sheer numbers and outstanding growth, the Hispanics’ over $1 trillion in household disposable income make them extremely appealing to Financial institutions. 14.5% of U.S. Hispanics can be considered affluent with incomes over $75,000. Still, many may perceive Hispanics to be mainly lower income even though approximately one in five Hispanics live in poverty. Hispanics bear noticeable differences from their non‐Hispanic white counterparts for financial products preferences. Further, Hispanic Americans lag behind with regard to breadth and depth of financial assets, particularly riskier but usually higher return asset classes. By the same token, the preferences for different financial products and services vary for Hispanic Americans based on their income level, education, country of origin, and number of years that they or their families have been in the U.S.

It’s time to understand their culture code for Money.

What is a Culture Code?

A culture code is the representation of our cultural understanding of a physical or abstract object. A full set of culture codes form the cultural unconscious, which is hidden from our own understanding, but is seen in our actions.

These culture codes or mental structures are formed at an early age and these strong imprints placed in people’s subconscious are determined by the culture in which they are raised. This is why people from different cultures have such different reactions to the same things.

American Culture Code for Money

First, let’s cover the definition of the culture code for money.

Dr. Clotaire Rapaille, the renowned anthropologist states that “the notion that we “come from nothing” pervades America. In a sense, we have the poorest rich people in the world, because even those who accumulate huge sums of money think like poor people. They continue to work hard, they continue to focus on cash flow and expenses, and they continue to struggle to earn more.”

But thinking of Americans as worried only about money is a misconception. To Americans money isn’t a goal in and of itself. It symbolizes a measure of how far they’ve come and how much was achieved. Money show us who the big winners are, therefore, the American Culture Code for money is PROOF.

Hispanic Culture Code for Money

Hispanics are risk averse. This changes with new generations being born in the U.S. You don’t talk about money and the risks associated with financial instruments and unstable economies.

Let’s examine the Latino culture in Latin America, where money is not proof of achievements or self-worth but a taboo. In Latin America, just like in Europe, there’s very little movement between economic classes. The children of professionals become professionals, the children of business owners become business owners and, for the most part, people stay within their class. Therefore money stops being proof to become something unpleasant you do not speak about.

In the United States speaking about money does not carry the same negative connotation than in Latin America, where doing so (speaking about money) in front of others or with others of same, higher or lower means is considered vulgar.

There is a also belief in Latin American culture that you can strike it rich with a fabulous (and easy to implement) idea. This notion is very much in line with the Hispanic fatalistic outlook in life where the belief is that things are predestined to be or to happen. The idea being that no matter what my origin or inherited resources, one can achieve financial success, not by hard work but by serendipitous means.

Therefore, the Latino culture code for money is LUCK. You got lucky to have been born into money, or lucky to have struck gold. Maybe you got lucky because you married somebody with money.

Among Latinos, the culturally accepted way to indicate wealth and material success is by owning the latest technology, wearing the latest fashion (designer, of course) or a high end luxury car. These are all symbols that enable people to demonstrate their wealth without having to talk about it. This is the exact opposite to the U.S. culture, where comfort rules and people wear what they prefer without worrying about being judged as successful or not for it.

US-born Hispanics Culture Code for Money

Let’s analyze the impact of both culture codes on U.S.-born Hispanics and highly acculturated ones. We will notice a dichotomy of thought that is accentuated the more the Latin and American culture codes are incorporated into their acculturation and enculturation process.

This process does not mean switching one cultural more for another. Changing mores would imply a process of assimilation whereas adopting and incorporating a new more implies a process of acculturation. What takes place inside of the bicultural persons’ brain is cultural frame-switching (CFS.) Cultural values switch, one taking prevalence over the other at different times to evaluate a message or situation. As a bicultural person, one can feel more comfortable speaking about money while looking at the situation from one’s culture perspective or feel less comfortable when perceiving and interpreting through the other culture, all thanks to cultural frame-switching.

The concept of cultural frame switching (CFS) or double consciousness was made popular by W.E.B Du Bois and focuses on how an individual switches between cultural frames of reference in response to a stimuli or to their environment.

“Individuals who integrate two cultures into their identity often attach cultural meaning systems to a framework that can be elicited by the language, icons, or stereotypes of that culture. Bilingual biculturals, when primed for a framework, may switch compatibly or incompatibly with the cultural frame elicited.” — Cultural frame switching and cognitive performance by Miriam Walsh, Ed.S., California Sate University, Fresno, 2011, 104 pages; 3458356

A good way to measure acculturation level for Latinos is how comfortable they become about speaking about money and less comfortably about sex.

American Hispanic Market Segments for the Financial Industry

While understanding the culture code for money pertaining to any culture is key for the marketing of any product and service, this need becomes heightened when we talk about the Financial and Banking industry.

We have identified 5 Hispanic market segments for Hispanics over 18 years of age who reside in the United States and are bicultural. It is important to highlight that biculturalism does not go hand in hand with bilingualism. Different strategies may have to be developed for these segments and for specific financial products or services these segments may have to be merged or split even further.

“Although the terms “bicultural” and “bilingual” are often seen together in the same text, there is very little work that attempts to encompass them into one reality, bicultural bilinguals. This paper takes up a number of themes that pertain to bicultural bilinguals, most notably how they are described in the literature, how they become both bilingual and bicultural, and how their languages and cultures wax and wane over time. Other aspects discussed are their linguistic and cultural behaviour as bicultural bilinguals, how they identify themselves both linguistically and culturally, as well as their personality as bicultural bilinguals. An effort is made whenever possible to bridge the gap between the two components that make up bicultural bilinguals – the linguistic and the cultural – and to show how the questions that interest linguists when studying bilinguals can be taken up and adapted by researchers examining cultural issues, and vice versa.” — François Grosjean, Université de Neuchâtel, Avenue du Premier-Mars 26, 2000 Neuchâtel, Switzerland.

These segments range from low-income Hispanics who can only access second-chance lending mortgages, prepaid or debit cards and basic savings accounts to high-income Hispanic Americans interested in more complex investments, mortgages and home equity loans.

In addition, language becomes a key factor in communicating and engaging with each segment. A large number  of Hispanics prefer to do business in English, particularly since the Spanish version of most financial literature existent in the U.S. misses out on detail and key disclosures that directly affect the financial transaction. Some companies make the horrible mistake of sending translated information to prospects and/or customers based only on whether their last name seems to be “Hispanic-like.”

Financial Industry Hispanic market Segments

Financial Industry Hispanic market Segments

To give you an idea of how attractive this market is, we think it’s worth mentioning the Underserved market. The “underserved” market represents more than 88 million individuals and nearly $1.3 trillion in wages.

Financial Industry Hispanic market segments characteristics and size

Financial Industry Hispanic market segments characteristics and size

It is important to highlight that biculturalism does not go hand in hand with bilingualism. Different strategies may have to be developed for the segments presented and, for specific financial products or services, these segments may have to be merged or split even further.

More about Hispanic Market Segmentation

————————————————

Target Latino has studied the U.S. Hispanic population, the Latin American and U.S. non-Hispanic, their online and offline behavior, for over 30 years, even before the Hispanic market was first “discovered.” As a result, we’ve developed proprietary methodologies that enable us to identify and segment Hispanics, online or offline, by age, gender, country and region of origin. We specialize in the identification of culture codes for the Hispanic market.

Cultural Insights & Cultural Differences


Uncovered Facts About Online Hispanic Women and their Media Usage
Hispanic Millennials
When it comes to a kid's television-viewing habits, the mom's language can matter.
Six out of 10 Hispanics are U.S.-born
Fannie Mae Launches New HomePath.com in Spanish Aimed at Helping More Hispanics Buy Homes

Be yourself. Sometimes it's easy to lose who we are... Once you get the real "you" back, happiness follows.

Be yourself. Sometimes it’s easy to lose who we are… Once you get the real “you” back, happiness follows.

Next Quote? funny inspirational quotes on every post!

Culture Code for Money: The Insider’s Guide

Hispanics represent over $1 trillion in household disposable income. It’s time to understand their culture code for Money. This article covers: the definition of culture codes and biculturalism; the code for money for American, Latin American and Hispanic American markets, its affect on marketing to financial and banking industry products; and a suggested segmentation of the U.S. Hispanic market for this particular industry.

Culture Code for Money - The Insider’s Guide

Culture Code for Money – The Insider’s Guide

Besides their sheer numbers and outstanding growth, the Hispanics’ over $1 trillion in household disposable income make them extremely appealing to Financial institutions. 14.5% of U.S. Hispanics can be considered affluent with incomes over $75,000. Still, many may perceive Hispanics to be mainly lower income even though approximately one in five Hispanics live in poverty. Hispanics bear noticeable differences from their non‐Hispanic white counterparts for financial products preferences. Further, Hispanic Americans lag behind with regard to breadth and depth of financial assets, particularly riskier but usually higher return asset classes. By the same token, the preferences for different financial products and services vary for Hispanic Americans based on their income level, education, country of origin, and number of years that they or their families have been in the U.S.

It’s time to understand their culture code for Money.

What is a Culture Code?

A culture code is the representation of our cultural understanding of a physical or abstract object. A full set of culture codes form the cultural unconscious, which is hidden from our own understanding, but is seen in our actions.

These culture codes or mental structures are formed at an early age and these strong imprints placed in people’s subconscious are determined by the culture in which they are raised. This is why people from different cultures have such different reactions to the same things.

American Culture Code for Money

First, let’s cover the definition of the culture code for money.

Dr. Clotaire Rapaille, the renowned anthropologist states that “the notion that we “come from nothing” pervades America. In a sense, we have the poorest rich people in the world, because even those who accumulate huge sums of money think like poor people. They continue to work hard, they continue to focus on cash flow and expenses, and they continue to struggle to earn more.”

But thinking of Americans as worried only about money is a misconception. To Americans money isn’t a goal in and of itself. It symbolizes a measure of how far they’ve come and how much was achieved. Money show us who the big winners are, therefore, the American Culture Code for money is PROOF.

Hispanic Culture Code for Money

Hispanics are risk averse. This changes with new generations being born in the U.S. You don’t talk about money and the risks associated with financial instruments and unstable economies.

Let’s examine the Latino culture in Latin America, where money is not proof of achievements or self-worth but a taboo. In Latin America, just like in Europe, there’s very little movement between economic classes. The children of professionals become professionals, the children of business owners become business owners and, for the most part, people stay within their class. Therefore money stops being proof to become something unpleasant you do not speak about.

In the United States speaking about money does not carry the same negative connotation than in Latin America, where doing so (speaking about money) in front of others or with others of same, higher or lower means is considered vulgar.

There is a also belief in Latin American culture that you can strike it rich with a fabulous (and easy to implement) idea. This notion is very much in line with the Hispanic fatalistic outlook in life where the belief is that things are predestined to be or to happen. The idea being that no matter what my origin or inherited resources, one can achieve financial success, not by hard work but by serendipitous means.

Therefore, the Latino culture code for money is LUCK. You got lucky to have been born into money, or lucky to have struck gold. Maybe you got lucky because you married somebody with money.

Among Latinos, the culturally accepted way to indicate wealth and material success is by owning the latest technology, wearing the latest fashion (designer, of course) or a high end luxury car. These are all symbols that enable people to demonstrate their wealth without having to talk about it. This is the exact opposite to the U.S. culture, where comfort rules and people wear what they prefer without worrying about being judged as successful or not for it.

US-born Hispanics Culture Code for Money

Let’s analyze the impact of both culture codes on U.S.-born Hispanics and highly acculturated ones. We will notice a dichotomy of thought that is accentuated the more the Latin and American culture codes are incorporated into their acculturation and enculturation process.

This process does not mean switching one cultural more for another. Changing mores would imply a process of assimilation whereas adopting and incorporating a new more implies a process of acculturation. What takes place inside of the bicultural persons’ brain is cultural frame-switching (CFS.) Cultural values switch, one taking prevalence over the other at different times to evaluate a message or situation. As a bicultural person, one can feel more comfortable speaking about money while looking at the situation from one’s culture perspective or feel less comfortable when perceiving and interpreting through the other culture, all thanks to cultural frame-switching.

The concept of cultural frame switching (CFS) or double consciousness was made popular by W.E.B Du Bois and focuses on how an individual switches between cultural frames of reference in response to a stimuli or to their environment.

“Individuals who integrate two cultures into their identity often attach cultural meaning systems to a framework that can be elicited by the language, icons, or stereotypes of that culture. Bilingual biculturals, when primed for a framework, may switch compatibly or incompatibly with the cultural frame elicited.” — Cultural frame switching and cognitive performance by Miriam Walsh, Ed.S., California Sate University, Fresno, 2011, 104 pages; 3458356

A good way to measure acculturation level for Latinos is how comfortable they become about speaking about money and less comfortably about sex.

American Hispanic Market Segments for the Financial Industry

While understanding the culture code for money pertaining to any culture is key for the marketing of any product and service, this need becomes heightened when we talk about the Financial and Banking industry.

We have identified 5 Hispanic market segments for Hispanics over 18 years of age who reside in the United States and are bicultural. It is important to highlight that biculturalism does not go hand in hand with bilingualism. Different strategies may have to be developed for these segments and for specific financial products or services these segments may have to be merged or split even further.

“Although the terms “bicultural” and “bilingual” are often seen together in the same text, there is very little work that attempts to encompass them into one reality, bicultural bilinguals. This paper takes up a number of themes that pertain to bicultural bilinguals, most notably how they are described in the literature, how they become both bilingual and bicultural, and how their languages and cultures wax and wane over time. Other aspects discussed are their linguistic and cultural behaviour as bicultural bilinguals, how they identify themselves both linguistically and culturally, as well as their personality as bicultural bilinguals. An effort is made whenever possible to bridge the gap between the two components that make up bicultural bilinguals – the linguistic and the cultural – and to show how the questions that interest linguists when studying bilinguals can be taken up and adapted by researchers examining cultural issues, and vice versa.” — François Grosjean, Université de Neuchâtel, Avenue du Premier-Mars 26, 2000 Neuchâtel, Switzerland.

These segments range from low-income Hispanics who can only access second-chance lending mortgages, prepaid or debit cards and basic savings accounts to high-income Hispanic Americans interested in more complex investments, mortgages and home equity loans.

In addition, language becomes a key factor in communicating and engaging with each segment. A large number  of Hispanics prefer to do business in English, particularly since the Spanish version of most financial literature existent in the U.S. misses out on detail and key disclosures that directly affect the financial transaction. Some companies make the horrible mistake of sending translated information to prospects and/or customers based only on whether their last name seems to be “Hispanic-like.”

Financial Industry Hispanic market Segments

Financial Industry Hispanic market Segments

To give you an idea of how attractive this market is, we think it’s worth mentioning the Underserved market. The “underserved” market represents more than 88 million individuals and nearly $1.3 trillion in wages.

Financial Industry Hispanic market segments characteristics and size

Financial Industry Hispanic market segments characteristics and size

It is important to highlight that biculturalism does not go hand in hand with bilingualism. Different strategies may have to be developed for the segments presented and, for specific financial products or services, these segments may have to be merged or split even further.

More about Hispanic Market Segmentation

————————————————

Target Latino has studied the U.S. Hispanic population, the Latin American and U.S. non-Hispanic, their online and offline behavior, for over 30 years, even before the Hispanic market was first “discovered.” As a result, we’ve developed proprietary methodologies that enable us to identify and segment Hispanics, online or offline, by age, gender, country and region of origin. We specialize in the identification of culture codes for the Hispanic market.

Cultural Insights & Cultural Differences


Uncovered Facts About Online Hispanic Women and their Media Usage
Hispanic Millennials
When it comes to a kid's television-viewing habits, the mom's language can matter.
Six out of 10 Hispanics are U.S.-born
Fannie Mae Launches New HomePath.com in Spanish Aimed at Helping More Hispanics Buy Homes

Be yourself. Sometimes it's easy to lose who we are... Once you get the real "you" back, happiness follows.

Be yourself. Sometimes it’s easy to lose who we are… Once you get the real “you” back, happiness follows.

Next Quote? funny inspirational quotes on every post!

Hispanics Minding Money in Downturn No Sacrificing Pleasures

Tough times call for tough decisions, but Latinos are finding ways to mind their budgets while still spending on the small pleasures and privileges they consider vital to their happiness and well-being.

Hispanics Minding Money in Downturn Without Sacrificing Pleasures, Research Finds

Hispanics Minding Money in Downturn Without Sacrificing Pleasures, Research Finds

C&R Research recently polled its LatinoEyes panel to assess behaviors by the “majority minority” during the recession, and found that “the recession has forced Hispanics to rethink what’s luxury and what’s necessity,” explained Angelina Villarreal, a C&R vice president. “What we’re seeing is that while this group is budget-conscious, its members don’t want to give up their quality of life.”

C&R, in its sample of 825 panel participants, found that the most recession-impacted segments were Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, and Central Americans; 58 percent reported that the recession had a significant impact on their lives.

However, a majority of Hispanics, particularly the young, was unwilling to relinquish cell phones (69 percent), and 81 percent (notably Mexicans) couldn’t do without driving their cars. Paid television services remain important to 67 percent, mostly the older generation, and the home Internet connection, particularly among fluent bicultural Hispanics, is maintained by 65 percent.

While nearly half of those polled said they were clipping coupons and buying clearance clothing, over three-fourths of Latinos are still spending on dining out or ordering in and going out for entertainment or to the movies, but with less frequency. And nearly three-fourths of the women in this sector haven’t let the downturn affect their purchasing of personal care products.

“Hispanics are trying to make do — maybe better than make do — if they can without abandoning their favorite products, entertainment, restaurants, and services,” Villarreal said. “And it looks like they’re succeeding.”

Chicago-based C&R Research is one of the nation’s largest, independent full-service research firms. Since 1959, it has provided custom-designed qualitative and quantitative research for a wide variety of business-to-business and business-to-consumer clients. Their specialty research expertise includes youth, boomers, parents and shoppers. In addition,( )C&R’s consultancy division, LatinoEyes, specializes in the U.S. Hispanic and Latin American markets. Its research team has a deep understanding of both the U.S. and Latino cultures.

SOURCE C&R Research

‘Frente a la Crisis – Facing the Crisis’

Economy crisis impact on Latinos examined in new Radio Bilingue series

Families across the nation are feeling the dire effects of the current economic crisis but probably none more so than Latinos, who may be the hardest hit by job loss, home foreclosures, loss of health insurance and deeper poverty – topics that are the focus of a new national series by Radio Bilingue: Frente a la Crisis/Facing the Crisis.”

Economy crisis impact on Latinos examined in new Radio Bilingue series

Economy crisis impact on Latinos examined in new Radio Bilingue series

This comprehensive, multimedia series is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and The California Endowment. Frente a la Crisis/Facing the Crisis” takes an inside look at the effects of the economic crisis in the Latino community, and is airing on Satelite Radio Bilingue’s nationally-distributed news and talk services, Linea Abierta and Edicion Semanaria de Noticiero Latino.

Linea Abierta broadcasts daily at noon and Edicion Semanaria airs weekly on Fridays at 4 p.m. — each featuring weekly episodes of the series over a twelve month period that began in September.

Linea Abierta broadcasts weekly talk shows on the economy, featuring roundtable discussions and interviews with newsmakers, and Edicion Semanaria airs in-depth feature reports, on issues ranging from health insurance loss, to accessing food to green jobs.

In addition, the national coverage will include visits by the Linea Abierta team to the epicenters of the recession to broadcast stories from the communities hardest hit by the economy. The live broadcasts will portray on the national airwaves outstanding efforts at the local level, including community-organizing initiatives, citizen ideas and government programs to help workers and homeowners get out of the economic crisis. The network’s online platforms also are being used as part of the informational media campaign.

In Central California — ground zero for joblessness and foreclosures in the nation — the project includes a specialized look at the impact of unemployment on Latinos through live talk shows, promotional spots and educational messages on employment issues and services.

Radio Bilingue is working with community partners to connect Spanish-speaking Latinos with resources to navigate the unemployment insurance system, apply for benefits, learn about eligibility requirements, emergency compensation, extended benefits, reemployment services, self-employment and small business help.

Funds are provided by: The California Endowment, Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund, James Irvine Foundation, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and ZeroDivide Foundation.

www.radiobilingue.org

Source: Radio Bilingue

Hispanics Preparing for Retirement Face Significant Challenges

New Study Reveals Significant Challenges Hispanic Americans Face in Preparing for Retirement

New Study Reveals Significant Challenges Hispanic Americans Face in Preparing for Retirement

A new report released today demonstrates that Hispanic Americans face greater challenges in obtaining a secure retirement than the average population. The paper, prepared by the Hispanic Institute think-tank and the Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR) coalition, finds that the unique challenges include a general lack of retirement preparation, less access to employer-sponsored retirement plans, lower levels of personal savings and inadequate financial literacy.

The report concludes that Hispanic Americans need to consider multiple retirement vehicles to supplement Social Security and to bridge the gap in access to employer plans. Options such as lifetime annuities can minimize financial risks and provide the means to both build retirement savings and secure guaranteed income that will last as long as they live. Access to such a source of guaranteed lifetime income to supplement Social Security is a critical part of planning for a secure retirement.

“While our research found that Hispanics face greater challenges in preparing for retirement than the average population, with the right tools to properly prepare for retirement, these obstacles can be overcome,” said Gus West, Board of Directors Chair for Hispanic Institute.

Significant findings of the study include:

  • Only 41 percent of Hispanic workers say they have saved money for retirement.
  • Only 25.6 percent of Hispanics are covered by employer-sponsored retirement plans, compared to 42.5 percent of whites and 40 percent of African-Americans.
  • Of the Hispanics receiving Social Security benefits, almost 80 percent rely on these benefits for at least 50 percent of their retirement earnings.
  • Among people 65 and older receiving Social Security, on average Hispanics receive about $2,124 less in earnings than non-Hispanics.

Between 1979 and 1999, middle-class Hispanics households increased nearly 80 percent. In the same period, the group of Hispanic households earnings between $40,000 to $140,000 grew to include about one-third of the total Hispanic households nationwide.

Today, the U.S. Hispanic population makes up about 48 million people; by 2050 that number will increase to 132 million, accounting for nearly 30 percent of the total U.S. population. Due to the growing Hispanic population, an average longer life expectancy, and because only 16 percent of the population is in their pre-retirement years, Hispanics will make up a significant number of those entering retirement in the future.

“Since two-thirds of Hispanics are employed in the service-related field, which generally does not offer employer-sponsored retirement plans, many hard working Hispanic Americans may not have the proper nest egg to retire. It is imperative that their savings are managed and invested in a secure plan that assures income for life,” said Brent Wilkes, Executive Director of League of United Latin American Citizens.

Legislation currently being considered in Congress would create tax advantages for the purchase of an annuity and the conversion of a portion of an individual’s savings into a lifetime retirement income stream. The Retirement Security Needs Lifetime Pay Act, H.R. 2748, in the U.S. House and the Retirement Security for Life Act, S. 1297, in the U.S. Senate, would create a tax exclude from taxes a portion of the annual income received through an annuity, increasing accessibility to lifetime annuities as a retirement option and creating significant tax savings for middle-income Americans.

“Congress needs to pass this legislation to encourage the greatest accessibility possibility to multiple retirement savings vehicles that tackle the income side of the retirement problem,” said Bill Waldie, Chairman of ASR.

The Hispanic Institute nonprofit organization formed in 2005 to provide an effective education forum for an informed and empowered Hispanic America. Americans for Secure Retirement is a broad-based coalition of more than 50 organizations who are united in their commitment to raise awareness of the retirement challenge facing all Americans.

To view the complete Hispanic and Retirement: Challenges and Opportunities report, please visit www.paycheckforlife.org.

SOURCE Americans for Secure Retirement

First major U.S. bank to offer mobile banking in Spanish

Citibank Launches Citi Mobile(R) En Espanol

Hispanic consumers now have even more options when it comes to their everyday banking. Citibank has just launched Citi Mobile en Espanol to enable customers who prefer to bank in Spanish to do so from their smartphones. The Spanish-language service lets customers manage their accounts, pay bills, locate Citibank branches and more – all from the convenience of their cell phones. Citibank is the first major U.S. bank to offer mobile banking in Spanish.

“Citi Mobile en Espanol offers our Spanish speaking customers the ability to bank anywhere, anytime on their smartphones,” said Liza Landsman, Executive Vice President, North America Internet & Mobile, Citi. “With Hispanic customers making up almost one-quarter of our customer base, the service makes banking even easier for this important and growing audience.”

Hispanics are among the most active mobile Web users in the United States. According to a recent independent report on Wireless Internet Use from Pew Research, nearly one-half of English-speaking Hispanic consumers reported accessing the Internet via a handheld device in 2009.(i) Of these consumers, about 29 percent reported going online “on a typical day” through a mobile device.(ii)

Citi Mobile en Espanol mirrors the functionality of the English-language Citi Mobile for Smartphones. It is accessed via the same convenient URL as the English version, www.citi.com, from any mobile device. Using Citi Mobile en Espanol, users of web-enabled mobile devices including BlackBerry® smartphones, Palm® devices and iPhone(TM) devices can easily do all of the following in Spanish:

  • View Citi account balances and account activity
  • Pay bills and set up recurring payments
  • Make transfers between Citi accounts
  • Locate Citi branches and ATMs
  • Connect to Customer Service

Citi Mobile en Espanol provides easy navigation on virtually any recent device that has a mobile browser and an internet connection. And signing in is easy — customers enter the same personal User ID and password they would use on their home computer.

Citibank was also the first major U.S. bank to offer Spanish-language online banking, in 2004. Today, with the introduction of Citi Mobile for Smartphones en Espanol, Citibank’s fastest-growing customer segment gains even greater access to quick, easy and highly secure banking.

(i) Horrigan, John, Wireless Internet Use, Pew Internet & American Life Project, July 2009,http://www.pewinternet.org/~/media//Files/Reports/2009/Wireless-Internet-Use.pdf., accessed Sept. 30, 2009. Page 14.

(ii) Horrigan, John, “Going online with a handheld by race,” Wireless Internet Use, Pew Internet & American Life Project, July 2009, http://www.pewinternet.org/~/media//Files/Reports/2009/Wireless-Internet-Use.pdf., accessed Sept. 30, 2009. Page 18.

Culture Code for Money - The Insider’s Guide
Economy crisis impact on Latinos examined in new Radio Bilingue series
New Study Reveals Significant Challenges Hispanic Americans Face in Preparing for Retirement
First major U.S. bank to offer mobile banking in Spanish

About Citi Mobile and Citibank

Citi Mobile for Smartphones is a mobile banking application built by Citibank with support from Mobile Money Ventures, a joint venture of Citi and SK Telecom that provides mobile financial services applications globally. Citibank was the first major U.S. bank to launch a downloadable mobile banking application in 2007.

Citibank is a member of Citi, the leading global financial services company, which has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 140 countries. Through its two operating units, Citicorp and Citi Holdings, Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, and wealth management. Additional information may be found at www.citigroup.com or www.citi.com.

Citi, Citibank and Citi Mobile are registered service marks of Citigroup Inc.

Palm is among the trademarks or registered trademarks owned by Palm, Inc. The Trademark BlackBerry is owned by Research In Motion Limited and is registered in the United States and may be pending or registered in other countries. Citibank is not endorsed, sponsored, affiliated with or otherwise authorized by Research in Motion Limited. iPhone is a trademark of Apple Inc.

SOURCE Citibank

Hispanic Scholarship Fund P&G Pledges $1.5MM

Scholarship applications now available until Feb. 2010

Procter & Gamble (P&G) and the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) are pleased to announce that P&G is awarding $1.5 million under the company’s Live, Learn and Thrive(TM) global cause to support HSF, the leading Hispanic organization devoted to awarding university scholarships. The grant will be provided over the next four years to support scholarships to increase participation from Hispanics in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) areas, as well as sponsoring educational outreach programs.

This contribution will help award 192, $2,500 scholarships to eligible Hispanic students nationwide in the next four years. Thanks to the support of companies like Procter & Gamble, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund has given over 90,000 scholarships to students in need worth over $250 million in the past 34 years. Two-thirds of these students were the first in their families to go to college.

“Through the Live, Learn and Thrive Scholarship program, P&G is enabling a cadre of academically talented, low income, first in family to attend college students complete an important new step in realizing the American dream. And, by focusing on STEM majors, P&G is strategically investing in future career paths destined to assure continued success and leadership of our country in this ever competitive global economy. We salute P&G and the scholars!” said Frank D. Alvarez, HSF President and CEO.

While Hispanics are the largest ethnic minority in the United States, they unfortunately are not keeping up when it comes to educational attainment: according to HSF, Latinos have the lowest high school and college completion rates of any racial or ethnic group, registering a 23.8 percent high school dropout rate, the highest of any major racial or ethnic group (ages 16 to 24), compared to 7 percent for non-Hispanic whites. Moreover, as per data from the Census report Educational Attainment in the United States: 2008, out of the total population, only 13 percent of Hispanics 25 and older have a bachelor’s degree, as per data from the report.

In addition, data from the study, “Confronting the ‘New’ American Dilemma, Underrepresented Minorities in Engineering: A Data-Based Look at Diversity,” from the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME) reveals that the number of minority students pursuing STEM degrees and careers has flattened out or even declined in recent years: out of the 6,404 doctoral degrees in engineering awarded in 2006, only 98 went to Latinos and Latinas.

Following its commitment to advance the Hispanic community, P&G has been a long-standing corporate partner of HSF for over 30 years and has donated more than $3,000,000 to help educate future Hispanic leaders. Under its global Live, Learn and Thrive(TM) cause, P&G aims to contribute to the success of Hispanic students and even make higher education a more realistic goal by helping build a pool of exceptional talent and empowering possible future employees, who will continue to enhance the company’s dedication to cater to the needs of its consumers.

“At P&G, we believe in having a workforce and business partners that reflect the markets and consumers that we serve, and to fully value and learn from all of their experiences, insights and talents so we can meaningfully improve the lives of our communities. As part of our efforts to improve life for children and youth, we’re proud to make this Live, Learn and Thrive(TM) grant in recognition of the programs HSF delivers on behalf of Hispanic students,” said Edgar Sandoval, P&G’s General Manager, North America Marketing.

Sandoval, a former recipient of an HSF scholarship while he was pursuing his engineering degree, was inducted into the prestigious Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) Alumni Hall of Fame as the “Inspirador” (the motivator), in recognition of his personal achievements and the hard work and sacrifice made in pursuit of a college education. His scholastic success testifies to the great positive impact that an HSF scholarship can have in a student’s life.

This year’s Alumni Hall of Fame Gala took place in New York on Sept. 30th, and was hosted by Natalie Morales, NBC’s “Today” Co-Host and National Correspondent. Created in 2002, the HSF Alumni Hall of Fame honors Hispanics who demonstrate the power of higher education and highlights how attaining a college degree can change individual lives and society as a whole for the better. As an inductee, Sandoval will join a select group of Latino professionals who have been recognized, including former Surgeon General Richard Carmona, U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Tony Garza and Time Warner Vice President Lisa Quiroz.

HSF’s scholarship application period is now open and will run until Feb. 28th, 2010. General application requirements include having a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA and be pursuing or planning to pursue their first undergraduate or graduate program. For more information on how to apply for these scholarships, please visit www.hsf.net

About the Hispanic Scholarship Fund

Founded in 1975 as a not-for-profit, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) is the nation’s preeminent Latino scholarship organization, providing the Latino community more college scholarships and educational outreach support than any other organization in the country. During the 2007-2008 academic year, HSF awarded almost 4,100 scholarships exceeding $26.7 million. In its 33-year history, HSF has awarded in excess of 86,000 scholarships, worth more than $247 million, to Latinos attending nearly 2,000 colleges and universities in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For a scholarship application or more information about HSF, please visit: WWW.HSF.NET.

About Procter & Gamble and Live, Learn and Thrive.

Three billion times a day, P&G brands touch the lives of people around the world. The company has one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leadership brands, including Pampers®, Tide®, Ariel®, Always®, Whisper®, Pantene®, Mach3®, Bounty®, Dawn®, Gain®, Pringles®, Charmin®, Downy®, Lenor®, Iams®, Crest®, Oral-B®, Duracell®, Olay®, Head & Shoulders®, Wella®, Gillette®, Braun® and Fusion®. The P&G community includes approximately 138,000 employees working in over 80 countries worldwide. In these countries and beyond, P&G is committed to improving lives for children in need through its global cause, Live, Learn and Thrive. Every day P&G Live, Learn and Thrive(TM) is helping children get off to a healthy start, receive access to education, and build skills for life. Please visit http://www.pg.com for the latest news and in-depth information about P&G, its brands, and Live, Learn and Thrive.

SOURCE Procter & Gamble

Prescription Assistance Partnership Prepared to Help NJ Workers

The ‘Help Is Here Express’ bus tour will be stopping in New Jersey throughout the week of August 9-15 at various cities in order to help uninsured and financially-struggling New Jersey residents access information on programs that provide prescription medicines for free or nearly free. With the state’s unemployment rate now hitting 8.8 percent — compared to 5.1% a year ago — the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA) bus tour is raising awareness of patient assistance programs among state residents who face layoffs and loss of health care benefits.

The PPA, a nationwide effort sponsored by America’s pharmaceutical research companies, provides a single point of access to more than 475 patient assistance programs that help those who are uninsured or struggling financially. Nearly 200 of the programs are provided by pharmaceutical companies.

The “Help Is Here Express” bus will be at the following New Jersey locations:

Sunday, August 9, 2009

WHEN: 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.

WHERE: Crawford Rodriguez Elementary School

1025 Larsen Road

Jackson, NJ 08527

Monday, August 10, 2009

WHEN: 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

WHERE: NJ STEPS

14 South Clifton Avenue

Lakewood, NJ 08701

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

WHEN: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

WHERE: Neighborhood Health Center

1700 Myrtle Avenue

Plainfield, NJ 07063

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

WHEN: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

WHERE: Neighborhood Health Center

250 Second Street

Elizabeth, NJ 07206

Saturday, August 15, 2009

WHEN: 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

WHERE: Shappell Park

427-429 South Main Street

Phillipsburg, NJ

“The PPA, so far, has helped well over 239,000 New Jersey residents find out if they may qualify for free or discounted medicines and as we move forward into 2009, the assistance is still available,” said PhRMA President and CEO Billy Tauzin. “That’s good news for the citizens of New Jersey, where there are more than 400,000 people out of work.”

Patients who qualify for help from the PPA’s participating patient assistance programs have access to more than 2,500 brand-name and generic prescription medicines. In addition, the PPA provides information on more than 10,000 free health care clinics in America and has connected more than 281,600 patients with clinics and health care providers in their communities.

Patients seeking help from PPA can call a toll-free number (1-888-4-PPA-NOW) to talk to a trained operator or access the PPA Web site (www.pparx.org). It only takes 10 to 15 minutes to find out if someone may qualify for free or discounted medications.

To help spread the word about the assistance available, the PPA’s “Help Is Here Express” buses continue to visit communities all over the country with trained specialists on board to provide information on how to access patient assistance programs. All 50 states and more than 2,500 towns and cities have been visited so far, and nearly 6 million patients have been helped nationwide since the PPA began in April 2005.

“At a time when national unemployment is the highest in almost two decades, the PPA has become an important lifeline for a growing number of patients,” PhRMA’s Tauzin said. “Millions of Americans have been added to the jobless rolls over the last several months and there could be a sharp increase in the number of our citizens losing health care benefits.”

“PPA is currently helping thousands of people every day,” Tauzin added, including those who need treatments to fight such debilitating chronic diseases as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and asthma.

On a national level, the Partnership for Prescription Assistance is represented by Emmy-winning syndicated television talk show host Montel Williams, named PPA’s national spokesman in January 2006. In addition, nationally recognized Telemundo talk show host and author Mayte Prida leads the PPA’s Hispanic outreach effort.

“Since January 2006, I’ve been traveling the country talking about the Partnership for Prescription Assistance, urging people to pick up the phone, log on to the Web site or visit the big, orange PPA bus to see if they may qualify for assistance,” said Williams. “As a patient who must cope every day with the effects of multiple sclerosis, I understand only too well the importance of having access to the medicine you need.”

More than 1,300 national, state and local partners are working with America’s pharmaceutical research companies to spread the word about the program. Trained specialists work with doctors, pharmacists, health care providers and community groups, educating them on the process and use of the PPA’s easy-to-access Web site and toll-free number.

To find out if there are patient assistance programs that may meet their needs, patients should call toll-free 1-888-4PPA-NOW (1-888-477-2669) to speak with a trained specialist or visit www.pparx.org.

Source: Partnership for Prescription Assistance

Targeting Latin Americans

Wyncrest’s Insurance and Financial Division to Rapidly Expand Into Latin American Market

The Wyncrest Group, Inc., a niche insurance consortium, announces its position to rapidly enter the Latin American market. Wyncrest’s pending acquisition of Florida Insurance Consulting Inc. will provide an important key to our growth in the Latin American markets. With the huge growth of the Spanish speaking population in the U.S., many markets are underrepresented and many families and businesses need an insurance and financial services provider.

As recently stated in our previous press release, Southwest Financial Group has been in talks with other Insurance and Financial services companies in Broward Country, Florida that could bring the number of agents in Florida to well over one hundred. This company is also doing roughly $120,000,000.00 in premium insurance and financial sales per year. The company hopes to continue its efforts in recruiting agents and associates from strong family backgrounds with ties to the Latin American communities, Cuba and elsewhere in the Caribbean, as well as South America.

Keith Lanzara, President of the Wyncrest Group, pointed out, “America is more Latin than ever before, and the language and cultural differences that exist must be overcome if Wyncrest Group’s growth strategy in the Latin insurance industry is to be successful. Wyncrest Group’s subsidiary Southwest Financial Group welcomes the opportunity to form synergies with Florida Insurance Consulting and to develop additional business in the Latin American community.”

Targeting Latin Americans

This demographic seems to be the most sought after by insurers. Hispanics represent the largest minority group in the United States with 44.3 million or 14.8% of the population. Latin Americans are also the fastest growing minority group and account for nearly half (1.4 million) the national population growth from 2005 to 2006. In U.S. history, there has never been an immigrant group that has grown to its current size while continuing to maintain its language, cultural values and traditions This makes Latin Americans a sizeable target for marketers in all industries.

The relatively young Hispanic population, entering the workforce for the first time or moving up their individual career ladders, are seeking additional gains in buying power. This will be even more important in this decade than in the 1990s. The increasing number of Latin Americans who have successfully started and expanded their own businesses is another potent force powering the growth of this consumer market, as evidenced by the 1.2 million Hispanic-owned firms in the U.S.

Health insurance providers and hospitals have traveled online to help build their brands with Latino audiences. At the same time tax preparation and accounting services continues to grow when it comes to the total dollars invested in Spanish-language media.

Source: Wyncrest

New Financial Services Hispanic Marketing Campaign

Fifth Third Bank (Nasdaq: FITB), a diversified financial services company headquartered in Cincinnati, OH, announced this week the launch of its new financial services Hispanic marketing campaign tailored for the growing Hispanic population. The campaign entitled “Las cosas que hacemos por los suenos,” or “The Things We Do for Dreams,” seeks to expand the Bank’s positioning as a trusted financial partner for Hispanics. The creative executions show variations of the “American Dream” such as owning a home or taking a family vacation, along with the Bank’s tips regarding how to make those dreams a reality through proper financial planning.

The campaign began running in April and will appear throughout the year in markets that are part of the Bank’s footprint: Chicago, Orlando, Tampa, Ft. Myers, Naples, Grand Rapids, and Indianapolis. The ads will run in radio, print, Out of Home and online in Spanish language media. Part of the campaign will also be a series of financial workshops and television vignettes providing tips on how to best handle one’s finances during the current economic climate and beyond. A comprehensive public relations push will support all initiatives.

Why a New Financial Services Hispanic Marketing Campaign

“The Hispanic market is a key growth segment for Fifth Third Bank. The goal with this campaign is to inform Hispanic customers about the best ways to keep their finances healthy and growing so they can make their dreams a reality,” said Larry S. Magnesen, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer.

“Fifth Third Bank just celebrated its 150th anniversary, a testament to the Bank’s strength and heritage. Our campaign seeks to couple that message of trust with a personal connection around Latino insights. At the end, the goal is simple: to get them to see Fifth Third as a partner they can trust,” commented Catherine Nunez Account Director at the vox collective, the full service advertising agency Fifth Third Bank is partnering with for many of its multicultural initiatives.

The campaign pieces can be viewed at: www.thevoxcollective.com/fifththirdbank

Fifth Third Bancorp is a diversified financial services company headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Company has $119 billion in assets, operates 16 affiliates with 1,318 full-service Banking Centers, including 99 Bank Mart(R) locations open seven days a week inside select grocery stores and 2,354 ATMs in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Florida, Tennessee, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Georgia and North Carolina. Fifth Third operates four main businesses: Commercial Banking, Branch Banking, Consumer Lending, and Investment Advisors. Fifth Third also has a 49% interest in Fifth Third Processing Solutions, LLC. Fifth Third is among the largest money managers in the Midwest and, as of March 31, 2009, had $166 billion in assets under care, of which it managed $23 billion for individuals, corporations and not-for-profit organizations. Investor information and press releases can be viewed at www.53.com. Fifth Third’s common stock is traded on the NASDAQ(R) National Global Select Market under the symbol “FITB.” Fifth Third Bank, Member FDIC.

Source: Fifth Third Bancorp

Hispanic Business Magazine Announces 500 Largest U.S. Hispanic-owned Companies

SANTA BARBARA, Calif., June 29 /PRNewswire/ — The June 2009 issue of Hispanic Business magazine features the 27th annual Hispanic Business 500, the benchmark directory of the 500 largest Hispanic-owned companies in the United States.
The annual Hispanic Business 500 directory is widely recognized as the barometer of the U.S. Hispanic economy. Cumulative revenues for the directory totaled $36.15 billion, a slight increase from 2008, which totaled $36.10 billion. A searchable directory of the 2009 Hispanic Business 500 is available now on the magazine’s companion web site, HispanicBusiness.com.
For the third straight year, the HB 500’s top-ranked company was the aptly named Brightstar, a global telecom wholesaler. Though the company posted a dip in revenue of 2.35 percent, it still managed to bring in $3.6 billion.
The surprising bright spot of this year’s list was the financial sector, which posted an impressive 17.2 percent boost in revenues. Pan-American Life Insurance Co. of New Orleans was among the successful businesses in this category, showing an 11 percent gain in revenue over the previous year, as well as a healthy 6 percent profit.
Companies included in the 500 must show at least 51 percent ownership by Hispanic U.S. citizens and must maintain headquarters in one of the 50 states or Washington, D.C. Principals must be U.S. citizens.
For more information, go to http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/rankings/hispanic_companies/
About Hispanic Business Media
For 30 years Hispanic Business Media has been the authoritative source for the latest trends, research and reporting on the growth of the U.S. Hispanic consumer market and the Hispanic enterprise and professional sectors.
Hispanic Business Media properties provide innovative branding and targeted marketing solutions across multiple platforms:
— Award-winning print editorial via Hispanic Business Magazine, which provides readers in the United States and around the world with the most relevant and data-driven news on the U.S. Hispanic economy. — Fresh, real-time online content and interaction via HispanicBusiness.com. The site specializes in b2b daily news, branded content from Hispanic Business magazine, original postings by hb.com writers and some user-generated content. — Hispanic Business Events, which feature and draw the nation’s most affluent and influential Hispanic leaders. Examples include the Hispanic Business magazine EOY Awards for entrepreneurial excellence; the CEO Capital Markets Roundtable; and the Woman of the Year (WOY) Awards. — Unique data reports on the U.S. Hispanic sector developed by HispanTelligence, the research arm of Hispanic Business Media. — Diversity recruiting and development services from HireDiversity.com.
HispanicBusiness magazine, HispanicBusiness.com, Hispanic Business magazine EOY, HireDiversity.com and HispanTelligence are registered trademarks of Hispanic Business Inc. 2008 Hispanic Business Inc. All rights reserved. Hispanic Business Media
Web Site: http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/
Source: PR Newswire

SANTA BARBARA, Calif., June 29 /PRNewswire/ — The June 2009 issue of Hispanic Business magazine features the 27th annual Hispanic Business 500, the benchmark directory of the 500 largest Hispanic-owned companies in the United States.

The annual Hispanic Business 500 directory is widely recognized as the barometer of the U.S. Hispanic economy. Cumulative revenues for the directory totaled $36.15 billion, a slight increase from 2008, which totaled $36.10 billion. A searchable directory of the 2009 Hispanic Business 500 is available now on the magazine’s companion web site, HispanicBusiness.com.

For the third straight year, the HB 500’s top-ranked company was the aptly named Brightstar, a global telecom wholesaler. Though the company posted a dip in revenue of 2.35 percent, it still managed to bring in $3.6 billion.

The surprising bright spot of this year’s list was the financial sector, which posted an impressive 17.2 percent boost in revenues. Pan-American Life Insurance Co. of New Orleans was among the successful businesses in this category, showing an 11 percent gain in revenue over the previous year, as well as a healthy 6 percent profit.

Companies included in the 500 must show at least 51 percent ownership by Hispanic U.S. citizens and must maintain headquarters in one of the 50 states or Washington, D.C. Principals must be U.S. citizens.

For more information, go to http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/rankings/hispanic_companies/

About Hispanic Business Media
For 30 years Hispanic Business Media has been the authoritative source for the latest trends, research and reporting on the growth of the U.S. Hispanic consumer market and the Hispanic enterprise and professional sectors.
Hispanic Business Media properties provide innovative branding and targeted marketing solutions across multiple platforms:
— Award-winning print editorial via Hispanic Business Magazine, which provides readers in the United States and around the world with the most relevant and data-driven news on the U.S. Hispanic economy. — Fresh, real-time online content and interaction via HispanicBusiness.com. The site specializes in b2b daily news, branded content from Hispanic Business magazine, original postings by hb.com writers and some user-generated content. — Hispanic Business Events, which feature and draw the nation’s most affluent and influential Hispanic leaders. Examples include the Hispanic Business magazine EOY Awards for entrepreneurial excellence; the CEO Capital Markets Roundtable; and the Woman of the Year (WOY) Awards. — Unique data reports on the U.S. Hispanic sector developed by HispanTelligence, the research arm of Hispanic Business Media. — Diversity recruiting and development services from HireDiversity.com.
HispanicBusiness magazine, HispanicBusiness.com, Hispanic Business magazine EOY, HireDiversity.com and HispanTelligence are registered trademarks of Hispanic Business Inc. 2008 Hispanic Business Inc. All rights reserved. Hispanic Business Media
Web Site: http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/
Source: PR Newswire