U.S. has more Spanish speakers than Spain

Latino Activists Launch Voter Registration DriveThe U.S. is now the world’s second largest Spanish-speaking country after Mexico, according to a new study published by Spain’s Instituto Cervantes. The report, El español, una lengua viva (Spanish, a living language) found that there are about 560 million Spanish speakers in the world, of which 41 million native speakers and 11.6 million speakers of Spanish as a second language (the majority of whom are bilingual) are documented as in the U.S.

With 52 million plus Spanish speakers, the U.S. has more than Colombia (48 million) and Spain (46 million) and is second only to Mexico (121 million). The report cites the U.S. Census Office as a source to support the claim that the country will have 138 million Spanish speakers by 2050, making it the biggest Spanish-speaking nation on Earth, with Spanish being the mother tongue of almost a third of its citizens.

Other key findings are:

  • in 2015, there are estimated to be 470 million native speakers of Spanish.
  • more than 21 million people are currently studying Spanish, of which 7.8 million are in the U.S.
  • after Chinese, Spanish has the most mother-tongue speakers
  • due to demographics, the percentage of world population that speaks Spanish is set to rise while the proportions speaking Chinese and English will decline
  • Spanish is the third most widely-used language online

Click here to download the report in Spanish

#spanish #espanyol #latino usa


  1. Let me clarify that so many of the so called “Spanish speakers” in the U.S. leave a lot to desire! Their idea of Spanish speaking is so far away from the truth. Take it from someone who deals with them on personal basis daily, and also taught ‘Spanish for Native Speakers’ long enough to find out that their so called “Spanish” is not even a resemblance of the language. A speaker of a language (any language) is to have true command of the same! Would you consider an English speaker with only a 25% to 35% command of the English language an English speaker? Hopefully you are not counting in your numbers the so many non-native “Spanish Teachers” with so many deficiencies/weaknesses that should not be teaching the language at all. With all respect, you need to do a little more in depth research, get to know the reality of Hispanic America, and if you speak Spanish travel to some of our countries. You will soon find out that “no todo lo que brilla es oro.” As for Mexico, the Native American percentage of the population is high enough & many do not speak Spanish at all. Same go for places like: Guatemala, Bolivia, Peru, etc. The U.S. do not need to be “the second largest Spanish-speaking country in the World!” In fact it is not, for the reasons already mentioned here & many other that you could easily find out! Please take the time to do some research & you will find the truth about this matter. Regards.

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