What better news to hear on a Friday morning than “Women want more”. Sorry buddy, I am not talking about you, I am talking about the latest study done by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). In fact both BCG and Goldman Sachs (who recently produced the Power of the Purse) think that economic growth moving forward will come from women. As some of us still remember: Goldman Sachs was the creator of the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) so, I took a closer look at their study.
Interesting fact: women are less affected by a recession than men! They expect that women’s income will grow from 13,000 billion to 18,000 billion within the next 5 years. This is ever more important than the economic growth of China and India combined! (btw expected to be around 2,800 billions).
Going back to women being less affected by a recession, we just have to look to see that Canadian statistics agree. During the first half of 2009, 50.6% of jobs were occupied by women. Comparing the unemployment rate, 8.4% for men and…. 6.4% for women. In addition to that, the women from 25-54 years of age were the only group to show employment creation in August 2009 (+23,000).
In their latest report, “Women want more”, the BCG explain that women are simply more educated, ingenious and ambitious (do not tell that to your wife 😉 ). Back in college, I remember having 2/3 of the class filled by cute girls, no complaints here ;-). I guess that all of them got their degrees and are now working their way up the corporate ladder as I sit here blogging in a bus ;-).
Working with the wealthy at my current job, I can tell that the recession hasn’t affected them much either. In fact, it is usually a great occasion for them to increase their net worth since there are a ton of deals to be had and interest rates for borrowing are low. So, I don’t doubt that women, that are definitely more educated than men in North America, are less affected by recessions.
According to Goldman Sachs’ Power of the Purse, women are also in control of the family budget in most households. This means they are in charge of approximately $20,000 billion (USD). And we can’t even say that we (men) are putting the bread on the table anymore 😉
According to the BCG, women make the final decisions affecting 75% of household expenses. Again, their buying power will definitely influence our economy in the upcoming years. This means that companies will have to adapt to their “new” clients. No more muscle cars and fatty tacos, they want the latest hybrid Prius car and a nice salad (dressing on the side please). Women are actually known to buy less gas and alcohol (they prefer to use alcohol found in their Coco Chanel flacon instead 😉 ).
More seriously, I don’t think this is a weird idea. Women have been one of the fastest growing economic groups in the last 30 years. Therfore, it should be expected to see them changing our economy. Imagine our economy controlled by women, this would mean…
– More fuel efficient cars (and the final doom of GM 😉 ).
– More ethical funds (and women are recognized as big savers).
– A more human approach towards career/family management, read: more flexible schedules.
– A place for every child in a decent (and government sponsored) daycare.
But this would also mean:
– Cheap hockey tickets as demand will drop since “the new family budget won’t permit it anymore”.
– A decrease in the price of beer for the same reason while wine prices skyrocket as “it is so romantic”.
– The end of the Big Mac (replaced by the Big Cucumber Salad).
– Increase in the price of computers because they would have to include a computer geek for assistance 7/24… in person!
Hum… I really wonder if we will get to this “new equilibrium” 😉
If you want more information on the Goldman Sachs study, you can get a free pdf copy by clicking here.
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