Buying power report shows most spending on better lifestyle

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(NNPA)—Black consumers are responding to tighter economic conditions by focusing more of their spending on products and services that improve their homes and lifestyle. That’s one of the trends revealed in the 15th annual report, “The Buying Power of Black America,” published by Target Market News.

The report analyzes spending for Black households in 2008 and finds that African-Americans began showing signs of the pending economic turmoil that would hit the entire nation. The pattern of purchases shifted dramatically in some categories. Contributions to churches and other nonprofits dropped 16 percent to $11 billion. Expenditures on personal care products and services declined 10 percent to $6.6 billion. Spending on alcoholic beverages decreased 6 percent to $2.8 billion.

Purchases of items related to the home continued to increase despite the need for economic sacrifices. Appliance purchases grew 27 percent to $2.2 billion.

Computers for home use climbed 28 percent to $3.5 billion. Consumer electronic expenditures went up by 32 percent to $4.5 billion.

“African-American households are facing this economy by being more focused in the purchases they make,” said Ken Smikle, president of Target Market News and editor of the “Buying Power” report.

“In 2008 Black consumers had total earned income of $803 billion. They ranked 17th among the economies of the world in comparable gross national income. They continue to be a critical part of the American marketplace, and will contribute substantially in the economic recovery of American business.”

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