May 8, 2008

Hispanic Women in the United States, 2007

Fact Sheet

Revised May 14, 2008

I. Overview

There are 30.1 million Hispanic adults in the United States and 14.4 million of them—or 48%—are women, according to recent U.S. Census Bureau estimates.1 This fact sheet describes the demographic, employment and income characteristics of Hispanic women in the U.S. using data from the 2007 Current Population Survey and the 2006 American Community Survey. It focuses on differences between Hispanic and non-Hispanic women, between native-born and foreign-born Hispanic women, and among immigrant Hispanic women from different countries of origin.

Highlighted Characteristics of Adult Hispanic Women:


Rakesh Kochhar and Susan Minushkin were instrumental in determining the content and focus of this fact sheet. The author thanks them for their guidance, input and editorial comments. Jeff Passel and Rick Fry provided much appreciated help with the fertility and income calculations, respectively. Gretchen Livingston and Susan Minushkin checked the numbers in the text, figures and appendix tables for consistency and accuracy.

A Note on Terminology

“Adults” are ages 18 and older.

“Foreign-born” refers to an individual who is not a U.S. citizen at birth or, in other words, who was born outside the U.S., Puerto Rico or other U.S. territories and who does not have a U.S. citizen parent.

The terms “foreign-born” and “immigrant” are used interchangeably throughout the fact sheet.

Data Sources

Most demographic, labor force, and earnings and income data presented in this fact sheet come from the Current Population Survey. The CPS, a monthly survey of about 50,000 households conducted jointly by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Census Bureau, is best known as the source for monthly unemployment statistics. Data on earnings are available for one-quarter of the monthly sample. Twelve monthly samples with earnings data are combined to create a merged outgoing rotation group (MORG) data file, which is used to analyze one year of data. Every March, both the sample size and the questionnaire of the CPS are augmented to produce the Annual Social and Economic Supplement, which provides additional data on several subjects, including household income. The CPS MORG and March Supplement data files used in this report were obtained from the National Bureau of Economic Research. Technical documentation for the CPS can be found at

The data presented in the fertility and language sections come from the 2006 American Community Survey. The ACS is the largest household survey in the United States, with a sample of about 3 million addresses. It is conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau and covers virtually the same topics as those in the long form of the decennial census. The specific microdata used in this report are the 1% samples of the decennial censuses and the 2006 ACS Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS) provided by the University of Minnesota. More information about the IPUMS, including variable definition and sampling error, is available at

Population totals from the monthly CPS, March CPS supplement and the ACS necessarily differ due to the application of different weights to the data sets. The CPS data are weighted to agree with population estimates for the civilian, non-institutional population while the ACS data are weighted to agree with population estimates for the total population. The reference dates of the data sets also differ. The CPS MORG and the ACS are weighted to reflect the estimated population as of July of the survey year, whereas the CPS March supplement is weighted to reflect the estimated population as of March of the survey year.

Each year the U.S. Census Bureau updates the population estimates for all dates since 2000, incorporating the latest available data and new methodologies when applicable. The population estimates presented in the first paragraph of this fact sheet are based upon the most recent estimates from the Census Bureau and differ from population totals provided by the 2007 monthly CPS, the CPS March 2007 Supplement and 2006 ACS.

A Note on Numbers

Numbers presented in the text and figures are rounded to the nearest whole number. When two categories are discussed jointly in the text, e.g. English only or English very well, the number presented is the summation of the two non-rounded data points. As a result, some of the numbers in the text differ from numbers in figures by one percentage point. Where this occurs, the number cited in the text should be regarded as the most accurate.

  1. U.S. Hispanic Population Surpasses 45 Million—Now 15 Percent of Total. U.S. Census Bureau Press Release (May 2008). Downloaded from on May 1, 2008. Please see the “Data Sources” section for an explanation of how these estimates differ from the population totals derived from the CPS MORG, CPS March Supplement and ACS.
  2. The fertility rate is defined as the number of women ages 15 to 44 per 1,000 women that age who reported having a child in the 12-month period prior to the survey. These data are from the 2006 American Community Survey, which was conducted from January through December 2006.