Spaniards in this statistical profile are people who self-identified as Hispanics of Spanish origin; this means either they themselves are Spanish immigrants or they trace their family ancestry to Spain.
Spaniards are the ninth-largest population of Hispanic origin living in the United States, accounting for 1.4% of the U.S. Hispanic population in 2013. Since 2007, the Spanish-origin population has more than doubled, growing from 353,000 to 746,000 over the period. At the same time, the foreign-born population of Spanish origin living in the U.S. almost doubled, from 60,000 in 2007 to 106,000 in 2013. In comparison, Mexicans, the nation’s largest Hispanic origin group, constituted 34.6 million, or 64.1%, of the Hispanic population in 2013.1
This statistical profile compares the demographic, income and economic characteristics of the Spanish population with the characteristics of all Hispanics and the U.S. population overall. It is based on Pew Research Center tabulations of the 2013 American Community Survey. Key facts include:
- Immigration status. Some 14% of Spaniards in the United States are foreign born, compared with 35% of Hispanics and 13% of the U.S. population overall. Roughly half of immigrants from Spain (53%) have been in the U.S. for over 20 years. Half of Spanish immigrants are U.S. citizens.
- Language. Almost all (93%) Spaniards ages 5 and older speak English proficiently.2 The other 7% of Spaniards report speaking English less than very well, compared with 32% of all Hispanics. In addition, 28% of Spaniards ages 5 and older speak Spanish at home.
- Age. Spaniards are younger than the U.S. population but older than Hispanics overall. The median age of Spaniards is 34; the median ages of the U.S. population and all Hispanics are 37 and 28, respectively. Among Spaniards, the median age of immigrants is 48 years old, while it’s 30 years among the U.S. born.
- Marital status. About half of Spaniards ages 18 and older are married (48%), similar to the rate of Hispanics overall (46%) and the U.S. population overall (50%).
- Fertility. Some 6% of Spanish women ages 15 to 44 gave birth in the 12 months prior to this survey. That was similar to the rate for all Hispanic women (7%) and the same as the overall rate for U.S. women.
- Regional dispersion. Spaniards are concentrated in the West (49%), mostly in California (21%), and in the South (29%), mostly in Texas (11%) and in Florida (8%).
- Educational attainment. Spaniards have higher levels of education than the U.S. Hispanic population and similar levels to the U.S. population overall. Some 32% of Spaniards ages 25 and older—compared with 14% of all U.S. Hispanics and 30% among the entire U.S. population—have obtained at least a bachelor’s degree. Among Spaniards ages 25 and older, the foreign born are more likely to have earned a bachelor’s degree or more than U.S.-born Spaniards—48% vs. 28%.
- Income. The median annual personal earnings for Spaniards ages 16 and older was $31,200 in the year prior to the survey—higher than the median earnings for all U.S. Hispanics ($21,900) and for the U.S. population ($30,000).
- Poverty status. The share of Spaniards who live in poverty, 13%, is lower than the rate for the general U.S. population (16%) and for Hispanics overall (25%).
- Health insurance. Some 13% of Spaniards do not have health insurance, compared with 29% of all Hispanics and 15% of the general U.S. population. Some 6% of Spaniards younger than 18 are uninsured. (These data reflect insurance rates prior to the implementation of the individual insurance mandate of the Affordable Care Act.)
- Homeownership. The rate of Spanish homeownership (60%) is higher than the rate for all Hispanics (45%) but lower than the U.S. population (64%) as a whole.
About the Data
This statistical profile of Hispanics of Spanish origin is based on the Census Bureau’s 2013 American Community Survey (ACS). The ACS is the largest household survey in the United States, with a sample of about 3 million addresses. The data used for this statistical profile come from 2013 ACS Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS), representing a 1% sample of the U.S. population.
Like any survey, estimates from the ACS are subject to sampling error and (potentially) measurement error. Information on the ACS sampling strategy and associated error is available at http://www.census.gov/acs/www/methodology/methodology_main/. An example of measurement error is that citizenship rates for the foreign born are estimated to be overstated in the decennial census and other official surveys, such as the ACS (see Jeffrey S. Passel. 2007. “Growing Share of Immigrants Choosing Naturalization.” Washington, D.C.: Pew Research Center, March). Finally, estimates from the ACS may differ from the decennial census or other Census Bureau surveys due to differences in methodology and data collection procedures (see, for example, http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/laborfor/laborfactsheet092209.html and http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/poverty/about/datasources/factsheet.html).