U.S. consumers are bracing for a polarizing year in politics. From impeachment proceedings to the presidential election, emotions are high, but unemployment is low, and that appears to be the economy’s saving grace as we head into 2020. Now in its fifth year, our annual consumer sentiment report, ThinkNow Pulse™, provides insight into how Americans feel about the state of the economy, its impact on their household income, and how the political climate influences their economic outlook. We compared this year’s data with past years and found interesting shifts in sentiment among key demographics.
Hispanic food is having a moment. From pupusas to gansitos, foods that have been traditionally geared towards Latino consumers have gained acceptance across a broader audience. Chief among them are tacos, of course, which have enjoyed a long tenure on the menu of American cuisine, inspiring Taco Tuesdays and a Netflix documentary series, “Taco Chronicles,” to say the least. But it’s not just the savory flavors of spicy beans, roasted chilies, and crunchy tortillas appealing to the appetites of U.S. consumers.
Amazon has quietly launched Amazon Cash, a service that allows consumers to purchase products on Amazon without having to use a debit or credit card. In this bold move, the online retail giant strategically positions itself as a resource for the 32.6 million households in the U.S. that don’t use banking services (unbanked) or make limited use of them (underbanked). While Amazon’s overarching strategy is to engage these consumers, who represent 25.2% of the U.S. population, it is also an effort to attract more African-American and Hispanic consumers, who just so happen to be the most likely ethnic groups to be unbanked, according to an FDIC study.
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Special Report Brought To You By Abasto & ThinkNow. The steady growth of the U.S. Hispanic population has caught the attention of the Latin American food and beverage industry. The United States is the second largest Spanish speaking population in the world and represent a sizable opportunity for smaller, more localized Latin American brands to engage with a large pool of consumers more likely to try their products. Successful brands like Bimbo and Novamex have paved the way for other Latin American food and beverage companies aspiring to take up residence in the U.S.
The trade war, to date, has been somewhat hypothetical, existing mainly in the minds of consumers as it has yet to hit our wallets tangibly. However, this may be changing in 2019 as the latest slate of tariffs is likely to affect items in grocery stores across the country. Hispanic grocery stores, however, have enjoyed a steady rise in business during 2018. So, will the impending tariffs stunt this growth? Let’s take a more in-depth look to find out.
2018 has been an eventful year for Hispanic grocery stores. We saw Bodega Latina expand to Texas with an acquisition of Fiesta Mart, Winn-Dixie’s Fresco Y Más concept grew in Florida, and Albertson’s El Rancho Supermercado officially entered the Houston market. Acquisitions and consolidations have been accelerating at a break neck pace the past several years and they will continue to in 2019. But what is driving this trend? Understanding the underlying drivers of these acquisitions and consolidations in the Hispanic grocery store space can help us see what the future of Hispanic grocery holds in 2019.
According to our most recent retail study, this holiday shopping season is predicted to be a real clash of the titans as Amazon and Walmart fight for the top spot in sales. From Walmart investing more in its online shopping platform to Amazon continuing to invest in its brick-and-mortar expansion, the two retail giants are battling it out. Unlike last year, Walmart, although by a small margin, topped Amazon this year, pulling ahead as the top retail destination for holiday shoppers this season. More consumers said they would shop at Walmart and Kmart this year compared to one year ago. The close of Toys “R” Us may be a contributing factor to this. So what can retailers learn from Walmart’s battle with Amazon?