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Women continue to feel financial impact of the pandemic

Emma Lunn
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Emma Lunn

A fifth of women fear they will be worse off financially should the UK government impose another lockdown.

Research from wealth manager Quilter found that women have been financially impacted by the pandemic more than men.

More than one in five (22%) women said they were in a worse position financially than they were last year, while 18% of men said the same.

Men were much more likely to consider themselves to be financially resilient to another lockdown should one be put in place.

Nearly a quarter of men (22%) said they were in a better financial position than they were last year, and that their current finances and earnings would allow them to cope with another lockdown. This compared to just 15% of women who said the same thing.

Women also appear to be more impacted by the current uncertainty around the Omicron variant and the impact of price rises as a result of inflation surging. 

A third (33%) of women said they hadn’t managed to save any money in December despite socialising less, compared to just a quarter (25%) of men saying the same.

A 2020 study from the Institute for Fiscal Studies found that women were about a third more likely to work in a sector that was forced to close as a result of lockdown than men

Meanwhile 2021 research from Kantar found that while 46% of women and 50% of men said they had saved more than usual during the pandemic, the amount saved by the average woman (£2,628) is half of that saved by a man (£5,335).

Heather Owen, financial advice expert at Quilter, said: “The Covid crisis has had a devastating impact on gender equality in terms of our personal finances. Women often work in sectors vulnerable to lockdowns or are responsible for the provision of care, meaning they have been exposed to a greater extent to the negative effects of the pandemic than men.

“Our research shows that nearly two years on from the start of the pandemic, women remain less confident than men when it comes to money and their financial prospects. It remains a worry that women are saving less and feel more vulnerable.

“As we emerge from the pandemic the government needs to be doing more to ensure women can get their careers back on track and in turn fully engage with their personal finances. Things are changing in the world of savings and investments, but we cannot let the pandemic put a halt to the progress made so far. It is important women are empowered to make financial decisions and that access to advice, products and services is made as inclusive as possible.”