In January, 54.6 percent of women over the age of 20 had jobs. That was the lowest proportion since 1993, and 0.8 percentage point lower than the figure in December 2009. By contrast, 67.6 percent of men over 20 had jobs, a rate that is 1.3 percentage points higher than it was at the end of 2009, although still below prerecession levels.The recession technically ended in June 2009, remember. One of the possible reasons the recovery is lagging for women echoes one of the reasons men were hit so hard by the recession: where the jobs are. The male-dominated industries of construction and manufacturing were doing badly then. Now:
Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomic Advisors, said it might be a result of who has, and has not, been hiring. He pointed to the Institute for Supply Management’s survey of manufacturers, which has indicated that companies are hiring, and to the survey by the National Federation of Independent Business, which indicates that its members are not. “Women are more likely to be employed by small service-sector companies than by large manufacturers,” he said.Women have also been particularly hard-hit by cuts to public sector jobs.
And of course, recession, recovery, or booming economy, women are paid less than men.