In this Latin country, the percentage of women who have bank accounts is greater than that of men. However, is it of any use?
For social, cultural or educational reasons, men have always had a more active financial behavior than women. According to figures from the Global Findex of the World Bank, 65% of women have a bank account, while in the case of men the number increases to 72%. However, there are six countries where the statistics are reversed and one of them is in Latin America: it is Argentina.
In this nation, 51% of women have their money in the bank and only 46% of men have a bank account. The reason behind this statistic, according to Leonora Klapper, an economist at the World Bank, is the allocation of money made by the State to the most vulnerable population, which in recent years has managed to bankroll low-income people.
However, according to data revealed by the Ministry of Finance of Argentina in 2017, women's income is still 27% lower compared to what men receive.
Being a woman in Argentina: synonymous with poverty?
As explained by the specialist in financial inclusion and teaching at the University of Buenos Aires (UBA, by its acronym in Spanish) and the Argentine Catholic University (UCA, by its acronym in Spanish), Ignacio Carballo, for BBC World, "many of the transfers in Argentina are given to women, as for example, the Universal Assignment by Son (AUH), which is the most preponderant."
According to reports from the National Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INDEC, by its acronym in Spanish), only in 2015, 3.5 million children and adolescents were covered by this assignment. This Argentine social security is granted to people for each child under the age of 18 that they have, as long as the adult does not have a job or their monthly income is less than the national minimum wage.
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Other INDEC data indicate that 20% of the female population charges less than the cost of the food basket. This is an aspect that puts women at greater risk of falling IGNORE INTO extreme poverty compared to men, who according to this same analysis do not exceed 10%.
Although this problem requires studying from a detailed social and cultural spectrum, the INDEC reports that the reasons for the low income received by Argentine women are mostly caused by the type of work performed, the hours they can assume due to their responsibilities as head of the household and the difficulties to be promoted to higher-paid jobs.
These factors, added to the strategies of the State to improve the economic conditions of women in Argentina, have caused an increase of 18% to 40% in the number of low-income people who recently opened a bank account in the South American country.
What are the other five countries?
Mongolia, Georgia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Laos are the other five countries that enter the Global Findex list. The reasons in these nations are similar to those registered in Argentina. However, the economic activity of women who work outside their nation is also added and they use their bank links to send remittances or, on the contrary, receive them.
Latin American Post | Krishna Jaramillo
Copy edited by Diana Rojas