For Immediate Release
Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C)
November 16, 2017

New Citi Report: Women in the Economy II - How Implementing a Women's Empowerment Agenda Can Shape the Global Economy

highlights

Follow-up to 2015 report finds that reductions in workplace gender inequality could result in significant GDP growth

New York – In a report issued today, Citi highlights the growth impacts made possible by shrinking gender inequality and by increasing women's economic empowerment. Women in the Economy II explores the economic case for women's empowerment through fresh insights and a series of case studies, and was produced as a follow-up to a 2015 report.

The report forecasts that raising women's average labor force participation; average hours worked, and average labor productivity to the levels for men could raise OECD GDP by as much as 20 percent, though it notes that a more realistic prediction is 6 percent over the next two decades.

Put into context, the potential economic payoff from reducing gender inequalities is larger and more sustainable than the potential boost from many current stimulus policies. For example, Citi's economics team estimates that current fiscal stimulus projects proposed in the U.S. have the potential to boost U.S. GDP by 1 to 1.5 percent from 2018-2021.

With the OECD estimating 1.5 percent total sustainable GDP growth per year in 2016-18, potential gains from gender equality could add the equivalent of four years of GDP growth in advanced economies. For countries such as Italy or Japan, where growth estimates are often near zero but gender gaps are large, the upside of pursuing gender equality is even greater.

"Women's economic empowerment is about creating gender equality and removing barriers to entry into the workforce for women," says Tina Fordham, Citi's Chief Global Political Analyst, appointed to the first-ever U.N. High Level Panel on Women's Economic Empowerment and strategic author on Citi's Gender Economics coverage. "Empowerment comes from creating onramps for women to be able to work if they want to. It's what happens when we address barriers like unpaid care work, or a lack of access to property and financial assets, which are just some of the reasons why women's labor participation is lower."

In addition to the Citi Research analysis, Women in the Economy II provides an overview of the recommendations of the United Nations' High Level Panel on Women's Economic Empowerment, including its Seven Primary Drivers of Women's Economic Empowerment.

Other highlights of the report include:

  • A discussion of workforce gender inequality in Canada compared to the U.S.; Sweden compared to Italy; and an analysis of economic inequality in Japan, where harnessing the potential of women in the economy will be vital to protecting even modest growth prospects for the country's economy.
  • An overview of Citi's own efforts to pioneer additional financial inclusion opportunities for women, through Citi's Community Development work around the world.
  • Interviews with Simona Scarpaleggia, CEO of IKEA Switzerland on managing the corporate challenge of increased female labor force participation and President Luis Guillermo of Costa Rica on the government and public sector role in advancing the UN's principles around women's economic empowerment.

The report concludes with recommendations for corporates and governments, and on the changes potentially brought about by social impact investing, as asset owners begin to demand more focus on diversity and women's economic empowerment.

Citi
Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.

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Citi GPS
As Citi's premier thought-leadership product, Citi GPS: Global Perspectives & Solutions is designed to help its readers navigate the global economy's most demanding challenges and to identify future themes and trends, in a fast-changing and interconnected world. Citi GPS accesses the best elements of the global conversation and harvests the thought leadership of a wide range of senior professionals across Citi. To learn more about Citi GPS and view other recent reports, please visit: https://www.citivelocity.com/citigps/

For more information:
Elizabeth Kelly
Citi Public Affairs
(212) 559-2477
elizabeth.kelly@citi.com

Susan Monahan
Citi Public Affairs
+44 207508-0786
susan.monahan@citi.com

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