‘Average woman only 14 days away from breadline if they lose their job’

Women are more vulnerable to the cost of living crisis than men, according to new research.

Woman holding a bill and calculator, looking worried


Women are more vulnerable to the cost-of-living crisis, according to research from Legal & General which finds that, on average, working women are only 14 days away from the breadline in the event they lose their income.

Legal & General says this is significantly less than the average working man, who would be able to meet their household costs for 28 days.

While the average working woman has comparable debts to men (£558 vs. £665), they have significantly less set aside in all their savings and investments (£1,801 vs. £3,214). With a daily expenditure of £90, calculations show that women would only be able to fund their household spending for two weeks with no income. On average, women overestimate their financial resilience, assuming they are 60 days from the breadline; this is compared to men who assume they have 90 days.

The research also found women are considerably more likely to view the cost-of-living crisis as a ‘constant source of worry’ (78% vs 68% of men) and therefore take action to address it. Women are much more likely to be cutting back on luxuries (86% vs 76% of men) and reducing essential spending, where possible (72% vs 65% of men).

On average, working women surveyed have a lower median annual personal income (£23,245 vs. £31,070).

Bernie Hickman, CEO, Legal & General Retail, said: “Throughout their lives, women face a number of challenges that can place them at a financial disadvantage compared to their male counterparts. This can include inequality of pay at work, taking career breaks, or taking part-time positions due to an expectation they will take on greater responsibility for family commitments. This often leaves them less financially resilient and in the context of the cost-of-living crisis, where everyone is feeling the pinch, it places additional pressure on their financial wellbeing. This can have an impact both in the here and now but can also contribute to inequalities in the long-term, such as with pension savings.”

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