March 7, 2012

Hispanics Will Account for an Increasingly Large Share of Labor Force Growth

74%

Hispanics will account for the vast majority — 74% — of the 10.5 million workers added to the labor force between 2010 and 2020.

Between 2010 and 2020, Hispanics are expected to add 7.7 million workers to the labor force. In contrast, the number of non-Hispanic whites in the labor force is projected to decrease by 1.6 million.

As a result, Hispanics will account for the vast majority — 74% — of the 10.5 million workers to be added to the labor force in this ten-year period. Hispanics accounted for a much lower share — 36% — of the total labor force increase from 1990 to 2000 and between 2000 and 2010 (54%).

One major factor is the rapid growth of the Hispanic population due to births and immigration. At the same time, the drop in non-Hispanic whites is due to comparatively high aging.

Another important factor is the higher rate of labor force participation among Hispanics. This rate — the share of the population, ages 16 and older, who are either employed or looking for work — was 64.7% in 2010. Among Hispanics, the rate was 67.5%.

In addition, Hispanics are, on average, younger than other groups. The group also includes a higher share of immigrants. Read More