The survey asked “When you earn money, what do you do with it?” of women and men who reported that they were employed. Figure 1 summarizes the results for men and women.
- Four in ten women report that their earned income is kept for personal use, but nearly half (49%) spend it on their family or children.
- Few workers report that their earnings are deposited into a bank as savings.
Figures 2 and 3 look at how women who work for pay manage their earned income, by their educational attainment and the amount of their earnings.
As levels of educational attainment increase, so does the percentage of women who keep their earnings for personal use. The opposite is true for money spent on family and children. Fewer women with a university degree or higher spend their earnings on their family and children compared with women who have lower levels of education.
- Forty-five percent of women with a university degree or higher kept their earnings for personal use, compared to 37% of women with a primary education and 16% of women with less than a primary education.
- Seventy-four percent of women with a primary education put their earnings towards their family and children, while 42% of women with a university degree or more did the same.
- Eight percent of women with a university degree or more put their earnings in a savings account, compared to only 2% of women with both primary and intermediate educations and 5% of women with a secondary education.
- Twice as many women with less than a primary education give their earnings to a spouse or parent to manage than women with a university degree or more (10 % and 5% respectively).
As women’s monthly income increases, so does the percentage of women who spend their earnings on family and children. This trend reverses, however, for money kept for personal use.
- More women in the higher income brackets put money in savings than do women earning less than $500 per month (11% of women earning $901 or more; 6% of women earning $501 to $900; 3% of women earning $301 to $500; 2% of women earning less than $300).
- Fifty-three percent of women earning $901 or more each month spent their earnings on their family and children, compared to four out of ten women earning $300 or less each month.
- One-third of women earning $901 or more keep their savings for personal use, while 49 percent of women earning $300 or less each month follow suit.
- Four times as many women who earn less than $300 as women who earn more than $901 or more each month give their earnings to their spouse or parent to manage.
Figure 4 looks at how women (n=789) and men (n=591) gauge their control over income.
- There is almost no difference between the attitudes of women and men regarding control over earnings.
- Eighty-nine percent of women and 86% of men said that they feel completely free in deciding how to spend their earnings. These differences are not statistically significant.