: ‘I had to give up my career, in a sense’: With a potential recession looming and inflation running high, many women are financially vulnerable

by | Jul 14, 2022 | Stock Market

The pandemic unleashed a “she-cession” where the financial fallout from lockdowns, remote schooling and fewer childcare options came down hard on women. Now, as recession worries mount and inflation rates reach a 41-year-high, a new study suggests women are particularly vulnerable to the economy’s headwinds.

Women were less likely than men to pay all of their bills on time, and less likely to report having manageable debts or rainy day savings tucked away, according to a survey from the Financial Health Network, a nonprofit organization. It carried out the research with funding from the Principal Foundation, a foundation linked to the insurance and financial services company Principal. While nearly three in 10 women (28%) said they were worse off than before the pandemic, 23% of men felt they were in worse financial shape, researchers said, after combing through the responses of roughly 1,000 men and 2,000 women. The divides become starker when breaking along demographic lines. For example, 54% of Black and Latina women said they were “just getting by” or “finding it difficult to get by,” compared to 39% of white women who felt the same way. The imbalance showed up in many places, including the career trajectories of men and women, according to the survey released Thursday. The disparity was often related to parenting. Overall, seven in 10 women with children under age 18 said they had made some sort of career change to accommodate parenting obligations, compared to 55% of men who said they did. Mothers were more likely to quit their job, reduce their hours, opt for paid parental leave or unpaid leave, or take a less demanding job, the survey also showed. One reason for the outcome was limited child care options as the pandemic has curtailed child care availability and capacity, the researchers said. “It was hard to find somebody to take care of the kids,” one survey participan …

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