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The New York Times, while conceding that the recession has to a great extent has been a “mancession” because it has hit men a lot harder than women, says that previous estimates that women could overtake men in the workforce may have been overstated…but only because the recession may be coming to an end.

“Will women eventually edge into the majority? It’s hard to say,” the Times writes. “If the recession is nearing a close, as some economists argue, women may have lost the opportunity of taking over a majority of the labor force for at least the time being. After all, women’s job force share may not continue growing once the economy recovers and the job market improves.:”

There are several reasons that women have not been as hard-hit by the recession as men. For one thing, there are more men in the workforce who can lose their jobs. Men make more, so cutting them saves more money. And, women tend to be “overrepresented in more downturn-resistant sectors like education and health care,” the Times writes.

Still, the numbers are extremely close, with men representing 50.17 of the non-farm workforce, and women at 49.83 percent.
KC's View:
Retailers and manufacturers ought to be examining this trend both actively and continuously, working to figure out how it is going to affect the shoppers who come in the store and the employees who take care of those customers.

Of course, there’s something else about gender roles to consider here…

There was a piece in the Chicago Sun Times> the other day saying that American men rank fourth in the world as being helpful spouses – behind husbands in Norway, Sweden (damn Scandinavians!) and the UK, but ay ahead of husbands in Australia, where men apparently are more interested in beer and sports than they are in being helpful around the house.

Wonder how Mrs. Content Guy would weigh in on this one? (She’d probably say something like, “I didn’t know he was Australian!”)