Women are set to rule the roost in the UK, with one-quarter expected to be the household’s breadwinner by 2030, research has found.
A report entitled Century of Saving, from National Savings and Investment (NS&I), found that women are increasingly contributing towards the household income and taking control of financial decisions, a dramatic shift from the 1950s.
The report forecasts that a shift in power will occur by 2020, when more women than men will have the last say regarding home financial decisions. In 2007, men in 20% of households made key financial decisions.
Future Foundation, a think-tank commissioned to undertake the research, found that despite women continuing to earn less than men per month (£1,080 against £1,486), 20-something female earners were catching up.
Equal earnings by 2015
The equivalent earnings of women in this age bracket was 93% of men’s wages in 2000, but has since increased to 96% in 2007 – a rate that would see women overtake men in 2015.
More than one-quarter of 16-24-year-old women said they would prefer to be the main breadwinner and break the traditional mould of being a stay-at-home parent.
William Nelson, of the Future Foundation, said: “In 2007, we are seeing the emergence of a generation of women who are better educated, more ambitious, and more financially confident than any before them.
“This generation is already more likely to handle day-to-day financial matters than their male partners, and demands to have at least an equal say in the big decisions,” he added.
Dax Harkins, NS&I’s senior savings strategist, added: “Women have a stronger hand to play than in the past, and will be the key decision makers in many households within a generation.”
Last month, the Equal Opportunities Commission warned that gender equality was still generations away and needed urgent action across all aspects of life to close the stubborn gaps in the next 10 years.