Women’s Empowerment has been a trending topic in recent times. Women’s meaningful economic involvement is critical to achieving better global peace and stability.
- When women are economically empowered, they invest in their families and communities, resulting in economic development and a more stable society.
- Accelerating women’s economic empowerment is crucial to ensure that developing nations attain economic self-sufficiency and shift from aid to trading partners.
President Biden engaged an Executive Order in March 2021 establishing the White House Gender Policy Council and recognizing “full participation of all people including women and girls. across all aspects of our society is vital to our Nation’s and the world’s economic wellbeing, health, and security.”
- Women entrepreneurs are a growing market force, contributing to innovation and job creation while supporting economic growth.
- On the other hand, women-owned enterprises do not have equitable access to the finance required to stabilize or expand.
Women entrepreneurs also have limited access to markets, market intelligence, digital services, networks, and mentorship. And other tools that help them overcome the challenges of beginning and expanding businesses and interacting with buyers.
Some of these barriers, like those in banking, are structural, while others are more individualistic. Institutional adjustments are required to address systemic impediments.
1. What is Women's Empowerment?
Women’s Empowerment may be defined as increasing women’s self-esteem, autonomy, and ability to affect societal change for themselves and others.
It is intimately tied to female Empowerment, a fundamental human right to developing a more peaceful and prosperous society.
Female Empowerment is usually associated with different historical periods of Western countries’ women’s rights movements. Typically, this movement is separated into three waves. The first began in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries when voting was widely practised. The second wave of the 1960s comprised the sexual revolution and the status of women in society. Third-wave feminism is widely thought to have begun in the 1990s.
A financially empowered individual is both knowledgeable and skilful. They know how they spend their money, make sound financial decisions, and access tools to help them achieve their objectives.
Financial Empowerment is the sense of control over one’s financial condition. When you have this sense of Empowerment, you feel in control of your financial circumstances rather than the other way around.
According to a survey conducted by Morningstar’s financial services business, people of all income levels can feel empowered. Furthermore, people with lower incomes who feel empowered report more pleasant money experiences than those with higher incomes who feel disempowered.
When we examined the precise thinking patterns that might affect a person’s emotional wellbeing, we discovered the significance of financial Empowerment. We found that people who feel empowered financially have greater joy, tranquillity, happiness, and pride in their economic life. Even after controlling for age, income, education, and gender, financial empowerment’s influence on emotional wellbeing remained considerable.
Financial wellness entails more than simply having enough money to pay your bills; it also entails feeling emotionally at peace with your finances. Every customer hopes to have that peace of mind after working with an advisor.
Gender equality is a fundamental human right and prerequisite for a peaceful and prosperous society.
2. What are the Recent Trends of Women Empowerment in the USA?
The United States introduced We-Fi, a new multi-donor facility, at the G20 Summit in 2017. Wi- Fi’s is to attract private-sector funding and stimulate more lending and investment for women-owned enterprises. We-Fi combines this with additional technical assistance, such as skill development and market access. To help women-owned and women-led small and medium-sized businesses prosper.
Bank of America revealed today the conclusions of a new study on women and financial wellness. 94% of women believe they will be individually accountable for their money at some time in their adult lives. Despite this, about half of women (48%) are confident about their money, but just 28 per cent are empowered to take action.
Investments and investing appear to be significant points for women and barriers to advancement. Regarding day-to-day financial choices like paying bills and creating budgets, men and women feel they have equal impact.
The study, which was publicized in a new report titled Women, Money, Confidence: A Lifelong Relationship, assessed how women rate their financial health, with the majority of women reporting they are doing well managing their day-to-day finances, such as paying their bills on time (70 per cent) and sticking to a budget (53 per cent), but they are struggling with longer-term actions such as paying down debt (44 per cent), saving for emergencies (44 per cent), saving for retirement (44 per cent), and saving for education (44 (27 per cent). One-in-five women (21%) recognize it is time to make a financial shift.
Only 48% are confident, and only 28% are empowered to take action. While 94% believe they will be individually accountable for their finances at some time in their lives. In addition, according to the report, women have difficulty paying off debt (44%), saving for retirement (36%), saving for emergencies (44%), and growing wealth (27 per cent).
According to a new survey, women manage their budgets rather effectively. According to Bank of America’s Women, Money, Confidence: A Lifelong Relationship, 70% of women do well when paying bills on time or sticking to a budget (43 per cent).
However, when it comes to financial decisions, 46 per cent of women think they have influence, while 64 per cent of males say they do. Women’s top barriers to investing include a lack of funds (38 per cent), a lack of understanding (32 per cent), and a belief that investment is too hazardous (22 per cent).
- When questioned about their financial regrets, over half of the women (44%) said they wished they had saved and invested sooner.
- Women also said they would have invested more money (26 per cent) and educated themselves more about money (23 per cent).
- Avoided as much credit card debt (21 per cent) and selected a higher-paying job (19 per cent). And lived within their means (18 per cent) and took better care of their health (14 per cent).
The United States was recently placed 19th in the world on the World Economic Forum’s gender gap index. (Source) With women making up fewer than one-fifth of elected members of Congress, the research cites political Empowerment as the most pressing problem for gender parity in the United States.
The United States rated higher in economic Empowerment, although women’s earning power remained almost 20% lower than men’s. (Source) On the other hand, women in the United States have incredibly high levels of educational achievement, with high levels of literacy and enrolment in elementary, secondary, and university education. Currently, more women than males attend college in the United States.
Women have fewer economic participation options than men, poorer access to primary and higher education, more excellent health and safety hazards, and less global political representation.
- Women’s rights and chances to fulfil their full potential are crucial for achieving gender equality and reaching various international development goals.
- Women and girls who are empowered add to the performance and wellbeing of their families, communities, and nations, creating a virtuous circle that benefits everyone.
Women contribute significantly to the economy. Countries with a higher gender balance in the workplace and workforce experience more prosperity, innovation, and stability. The same is true for businesses: those with a higher proportion of women in leadership, management, and the workforce outperform those with a lower proportion of women.
- The greater the disparity in opportunity between men and women, the more likely a country would be embroiled in a violent war.
- On the other hand, nations where women have equal chances, are more likely to develop and handle problems peacefully.
In any country, the environment for economic activity frequently includes multiple impediments that disfavour women when they seek a job, business, and investment possibilities.
- The legal and regulatory framework, policies and practices (public and private sector).
- And social norms that promote women working in the formal economy.
- Or enhance fundamental circumstances for women working in the informal economy are all part of the enabling environment for women in the economy.
In contrast, if not addressed, any of these issues might stifle women’s economic Empowerment.