Women’s Job Cuts May Shave $1 Trillion Off Global GDP, Citi Says

Women’s Job Cuts May Shave $1 Trillion Off Global GDP, Citi Says

Bloomberg  | May 21, 2020 09:09

Women’s Job Cuts May Shave $1 Trillion Off Global GDP, Citi Says

(Bloomberg) -- A potential $1 trillion could be lost from global growth as female workers fall out of the workforce during the coronavirus, according to a new analysis by Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C).

Of 44 million workers in vulnerable sectors, about 31 million female workers face potential job cuts compared to 13 million men, underscoring that women globally are more vulnerable to losing their jobs during the crisis. The assessment excludes China, with the figure likely to be higher if the world’s second-largest economy was included.

Citi estimates more than 220 million women are in sectors vulnerable to job cuts amid the pandemic. If approximately 31 million women in six key sectors lost their jobs, that could mean an equivalent loss to real global GDP of as much as $1 trillion.

“The greater vulnerability of women to job losses is due to the segmentation of female laborers into sectors that are the most negatively affected by coronavirus disruptions,” Citi economists Dana Peterson and Catherine Mann wrote in a research note.

Among the steps they recommend to policy makers:

  • Encourage employer-sponsored incentives such as paid leave and flexible working arrangements
  • Provide subsidized private and public child-care options
  • Provide unemployment insurance to non-traditional workers
  • Provide financial support for small businesses and direct cash payments to affected workers
  • Suspend evictions, defer mortgage and utility payments, provide training and support for small firms and entrepreneurs
  • Ensure that policy and structural adjustments to support sustainable recovery are analyzed for gender and intersectionality
  • Collect statistics related to public and private efforts to support female labor force participation

“Many of the policies that promoted female labor force participation pre-coronavirus are even more suitable in a post-pandemic world,” the Citi economists wrote.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

© Bloomberg. BEIJING, CHINA - MARCH 02: Seen through the reflection of an advertisement, Chinese office workers wear protective masks as they ride on a public bus after leaving work on March 2, 2020 in Beijing, China. The number of cases of the deadly new coronavirus COVID-19 being treated in China dropped to below 33,000 in mainland China Monday, in what the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global public health emergency last month. China continued to lock down the city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the virus, in an effort to contain the spread of the pneumonia-like disease. Officials in Beijing have put in place a mandatory 14 day quarantine for all people returning to the capital from other places in China. The number of those who have died from the virus in China climbed to over 2900 on Monday, mostly in Hubei province, and cases have been reported in other countries including the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, South Korea, India, Iran, Italy, the United Kingdom, Germany, France and several others. The World Health Organization has warned all governments to be on alert and raised concerns over a possible pandemic. Some countries, including the United States, have put restrictions on Chinese travellers entering and advised their citizens against travel to China.(Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

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