Gap between male and female employment continues to fall

THE past four decades have seen a dramatic rise in the number of women in work and a fall in the percentage of men.

Data released yesterday by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that between April and June 2013 around 67 per cent of women aged 16 to 64 were in work, compared to just 53 per cent in 1971. However, just 76 per cent of men were employed in 2013, a sharp drop from 92 per cent in 1971.

The biggest shift in more women and fewer men working happened between 1971 and 1991.

“One possible factor is the rise of the service sector and decline of the manufacturing sector beginning in the 1960s,” the ONS explained. “Traditionally a higher proportion of women than men have worked in services, with a higher proportion of men working in manufacturing.”

The data also shows that 35 per cent of British senior managers are female, compared to 33 per cent on average in the EU.