Two in Three Women Across Europe Believe They are Financially Worse off Than They Were Five Years Ago

Two in Three Women Across Europe Believe They are Financially Worse off Than They Were Five Years Ago

Rachel White

Two in three (66%) European women believe they are worse off or about the same financially, compared with five years ago, this percentage is the highest in any region around the world.

We’ve looked into the key concerns of women—both in and out of the workplace—and found that although Western Europe is one of the top regions for gender parity, women still strongly feel an imbalance at work, financially and at home. Men, on the other hand, have a rosier outlook.

When it comes to the workplace:

  • 51% of women disagree that women receive the same pay as men for doing exactly the same job, compared with 32% of men
  • 69% of women agree that female leaders have to work harder than men, compared with just 45% of men
  • 77% of women say being a parent impacts women’s careers more than men, compared with 61% of men

At home, the imbalance is even greater. When it comes to shopping for daily needs, 49% of women say it’s their primary responsibility, compared with 23% of men. Moreover, 52% of women feel more financial pressure, as they have just enough money to cover food, shelter and basics, compared with 43% of men.

Although society is making progress when it comes to equality, we have yet to reach parity.  Women still lag behind men in terms of job prospects, the ability to spend freely and continue to have the main responsibility for shopping and household chores, with nine out of 10 taking on this task exclusively or jointly.

By 2028, women will control 75% of all discretionary income globally—the net money left over after paying basic expenses. This will impact the way women will shop, what they believe they can afford and how they will shop for convenience.

In terms of women’s consumer shopping habits across the globe:

  • 64% of women believe they are busier than two years ago, with 61% prioritising proximity of stores when shopping as a result
  • 44% of women are spending more on groceries than five years ago, and 47% are more likely to try new brands than they were five years ago
  • 73% of women are willing to change purchasing habits to reduce environmental impact, with three out of four women feeling more positive about companies that are open about where and how they get or grow products.

Women are extremely important to the FMCG industry – they’re the decision makers on whether or not a brand accesses their family life. That means it’s critical that brands understand what women want; when they want it and; most importantly, that they reflect who women are. This, along with being authentic, will help them remain relevant with female consumers globally.

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Insights derived from the following sources:

  • The Conference Board® Global Consumer Confidence Survey is conducted in collaboration with Nielsen Q1 2019.
  • The Nielsen Q1 2019 Loyalty Survey
  • Nielsen Global Premiumization Survey Q2 2018
  • Nielsen Global Commerce Study Q2 2018
  • Nielsen Global Ingredient and Dining-Out Trends Report Aug 2016 
  • Nielsen Global Health and Wellness Q3 2016