Women, when they retire from work, will just have 74 per cent of the wealth accumulated by men, said a global gender report. The main reason for wealth disparity include pay gaps and delayed career trajectories, said the 2022 WTW Global Gender Wealth Equity report. In Asia-Pacific (APAC), India had the worst gender wealth gap (64 per cent).
A major factor for this is India’s gender pay gap, which is more than the global average and particularly for professional and technical roles. Another important factor is that opportunities for women in leadership positions are limited, with only 3 per cent of women in the workforce at senior positions.
Women assume childcare responsibilities at a young age, adding to financial burdens they might not be able to bear alone. Also, long-term financial decisions generally rest with men and financial literacy for working women tends to be lower in India.
The report by WTW, an advisory, broking and solutions company, said APAC has one of the lowest global wealth gaps on average for gender wealth equity. Women in the region will likely accumulate just over three-quarters or 76 per cent of men’s wealth levels, and just two points above the global average.
The report highlights that across the 12 markets in the APAC region, the gender wealth gaps ranges from 64 per cent in India to 90 per cent in South Korea.
The study shows that overall, the gender wealth gap at retirement increases with seniority. At the global level, women in senior expert and leadership roles were found to have less than two-thirds or just 62 per cent of the accumulated wealth of their male counterparts at the time of retirement. A substantial gap of 69 per cent was found at the mid-level professional and technical roles, but it narrowed considerably to 89 per cent for frontline operational roles.
According to the report, a total of six markets included in the analysis have a higher wealth index at retirement for women compared to the global average, and among them are China (78 per cent), Japan (82 per cent), Philippines (79 per cent) and Singapore (79 per cent).
“The results from our global analysis are startling. It shows that there is a gender wealth gap consistently across the 39 countries that we studied. The primary drivers contributing to gender-based wealth disparity include gender pay gaps and delayed career trajectories. Additionally, gaps in financial literacy and family caregiving responsibilities outside the workplace influence women’s participation in paid employment and therefore their ability to build wealth,” Manjit Basi, Senior Director, Integrated & Global Solutions, WTW, said in a release, reported a business daily.
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