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The Pandemic’s Financial Toll on Women

In April alone, the U.S. lost more than 20 million jobs — increasing the unemployment rate to 14.7%. Researchers say one of the demographics hit hardest during the pandemic is women workers. Women tend to hold a disproportionate number of jobs in industries such as hospitality, health care and education. Consequently, the unemployment rate for women jumped to 15.5%.1

The loss of one income in a two-income household is hard enough, but if a sole provider loses their income, things are even more difficult. If this happens to you, your first consideration should be to pursue any unemployment insurance options available to you. Also know that we are available to discuss your current situation and its potential impact on your long-term financial plans. Don’t hesitate to call for guidance.

For those who have remained fully employed by working at home, many have discovered a new, unexpected dynamic: working longer hours. Studies show the American workday has now increased by nearly three hours. On top of longer work hours, an in-home office may also mean juggling the roles of elementary school teacher and all-day caretaker. While this a relatively familiar issue for some families, the inability to separate work from home life is taking a higher toll on women. A recent survey found 14% of women are considering quitting their jobs due to COVID-19-related work and family conflicts.2

Despite these challenges, women have become a powerful economic force. They control nearly a third (32%) of the world’s wealth and are increasing their wealth by $5 trillion every year. While this wealth and power is clearly not universally spread across the gender, those who have accumulated significant assets are expected to weather any short-term impacts due to the current economic decline, and rise to $93 trillion by 2023.3

Content prepared by Kara Stefan Communications.

1 Charisse Jones. USA Today. May 8, 2020. “Historic layoffs take biggest toll on Blacks, Latinos, women and the young.” https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2020/05/08/covid-19-layoffs-take-toll-women-people-color-and-young/3094964001/. Accessed May 12, 2020.

2 Joan C. Williams. Harvard Business Review. May 11, 2020. “The Pandemic Has Exposed the Fallacy of the ‘Ideal Worker.’” https://hbr.org/2020/05/the-pandemic-has-exposed-the-fallacy-of-the-ideal-worker. Accessed May 12, 2020.

3 Anna Zakrzewski, Kedra Newsom, Michael Kahlich, Maximilian Klein, Andrea Real Mattar and Stephan Knobel. Boston Consulting Group. April 9, 2020. “Managing the Next Decade of Women’s Wealth.” https://www.bcg.com/publications/2020/managing-next-decade-women-wealth.aspx. Accessed May 12, 2020.

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The information contained in this material is believed to be reliable, but accuracy and completeness cannot be guaranteed; it is not intended to be used as the sole basis for financial decisions. If you are unable to access any of the news articles and sources through the links provided in this text, please contact us to request a copy of the desired reference.

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