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Vietnamese Community Offers New Opportunity

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Producers who want to be part of “the fastest-growing community in the U.S.” may want to consider reaching out to Vietnamese-Americans, according to Lily Ku, assistant vice president, Chinese and Vietnamese market with New York Life Insurance Company.

In 2010, it is going to surpass all other Asian communities in size with the exception of the Chinese community, she adds.

Reaching this community requires an understanding of its makeup, Ku says. Vietnamese-Americans have tended to establish communities in urban areas in California, as well as in Houston, Dallas, New York, Philadelphia and, most recently, Washington, D.C.

The population, she continues, is overwhelmingly first-generation American. A total of 79% of the Vietnamese community are first generation, Ku adds.

The Vietnamese community is also conservative, and is focused on core family values and saving, she says.

Families in this community tend to be extended, says Jane Conti, vice president, agency department with New York Life. She says the growth in this community warrants efforts to expand service to Vietnamese-Americans.

As of 2000, there were 1.1 million Vietnamese in the United States, about .39% of the population, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

By age, 26.9% of this group was under 18, 68.1% between age 18 and 64 and 5% over age 64.

A total of 54.9% of Vietnamese were married and 23.9% were natural citizens, the Census Bureau reports, while 44% were foreign born but naturalized citizens, and 32.1% were foreign born but not naturalized citizens.

English was spoken at home by 6.9% of this community, 30.6% said that they did not speak English at home but could speak it well, and 62.4% said that they did not speak English at home and could speak it less well.


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