The Annual Spending Power Gender Gap: Europe

As we cross the Atlantic, the spending power gender gap narrative remains the same in Europe as in our previous reports on North America and South America. On average, men have more to spend per year than women despite the fact that only 71 out of 40 countries in our analysis have a population with more men than women. In Europe2, the spending power gender gap amounts to $378.36 (in 2011 PPP) of extra annual consumption power for men and this is expected to increase by 62% to $611.51 over the next 10 years. Both totals are above the global average which stands at $236.62 today and is expected to increase to $467.17 by 2030.

Only 8 countries have a gender spending power gap in favor of women

Given that overall, Europe has a spending power gender gap in favor of men, the countries that exhibit the opposite trend in favor of women have much smaller gaps which range from a low of $2.68 in Serbia to a high of $155.98 in Portugal. On average, this gap in favor of women is $82.84 across all 8 countries3. All of these countries, with the exception of Portugal, have an average annual spending power below the current European average of $14,623. They range from a low of $5,340 in Kosovo to a high $16,330 in Portugal.

Gender gaps will widen over the next decade

The spending power gender gap will widen for nearly every country currently exhibiting one, whether the gap is in favor of men or women. Lithuania is expected to see the largest increase of the spending power gender gap over the next decade and is expected to overtake Germany to have the largest gap in Europe. Over the next decade, the gap in Lithuania will almost double from $760.07 today to $1,363.88. This amounts to around 7% more spending power for men compared to women. Germany’s gap is expected to remain virtually the same. It is expected to narrow by only $1.16 by 2030 to $1,246.37. The gap in Switzerland, the country with the highest spending power in all of Europe, is expected to be the third-highest by 2030 but, like Germany, will virtually remain unchanged over the next ten years (increase of $0.37 to $1,137.71).

The largest spending power gender gap in favor of women is expected to be in Albania. By 2030, women are expected to have on average $276.48 more to spend per year than men, representing around 3% in extra consumption power. Serbia, as mentioned above, which currently has almost no spending power gender gap is expected to have a small one in favor of men by 2030 ($31.61).

7 countries will see their gender gaps narrow

While gaps are expected to widen in most countries, some countries4 are projected to experience a narrowing of the gender gap. Moldova’s narrowing of its gender gap, which after Serbia and Kosovo is currently the third-smallest in Europe at $19.97 in favor of women, is expected to narrow its gap to only $0.71 by 2030, by far the lowest in all of Europe. The largest narrowing of the gap over the next decade is expected to come from Great Britain. The gap, which is currently in favor of men, is expected to narrow from $552.02 today to $443.67. An equivalent narrowing of the gap is also expected to happen in Denmark (from $458.69 to $356.01). Overall, the average narrowing of the gap across these 7 countries is expected to be $56.64 whereas the average widening of the gap in the other 33 countries is expected to be $139.01.

If the gender gap is going to close, more work needs to be done across Europe. Women have less spending power than men in 80% of the countries in Europe. While advanced economies such as Germany and Switzerland seem to be putting measures in place to prevent the spending power gender gap from widening, efforts such as those implemented by Denmark and Great Britain are needed in order for both genders to be equal from a spending power perspective.

  1. Albania, Ireland, Iceland, Luxembourg, North Macedonia, Norway, and Sweden.
  2. In our analysis, Europe includes the following countries: Albania, Austria, Belgium. Belarus, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Estonia, Finland, France, Great Britain, Greece, Croatia, Hungary, Ireland, Iceland, Italy, Kosovo, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Latvia, Moldova, North Macedonia, Malta, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, and Ukraine.
  3. Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Moldova, North Macedonia, Portugal, Russia, and Serbia.
  4. Germany, Denmark, Great Britain, Greece, Moldova, Malta, and Slovakia.

Only 8 countries have a gender spending power gap in favor of women

Given that overall, Europe has a spending power gender gap in favor of men, the countries that exhibit the opposite trend in favor of women have much smaller gaps which range from a low of $2.68 in Serbia to a high of $155.98 in Portugal. On average, this gap in favor of women is $82.84 across all 8 countries3. All of these countries, with the exception of Portugal, have an average annual spending power below the current European average of $14,623. They range from a low of $5,340 in Kosovo to a high $16,330 in Portugal.

Gender gaps will widen over the next decade

The spending power gender gap will widen for nearly every country currently exhibiting one, whether the gap is in favor of men or women. Lithuania is expected to see the largest increase of the spending power gender gap over the next decade and is expected to overtake Germany to have the largest gap in Europe. Over the next decade, the gap in Lithuania will almost double from $760.07 today to $1,363.88. This amounts to around 7% more spending power for men compared to women. Germany’s gap is expected to remain virtually the same. It is expected to narrow by only $1.16 by 2030 to $1,246.37. The gap in Switzerland, the country with the highest spending power in all of Europe, is expected to be the third-highest by 2030 but, like Germany, will virtually remain unchanged over the next ten years (increase of $0.37 to $1,137.71).

The largest spending power gender gap in favor of women is expected to be in Albania. By 2030, women are expected to have on average $276.48 more to spend per year than men, representing around 3% in extra consumption power. Serbia, as mentioned above, which currently has almost no spending power gender gap is expected to have a small one in favor of men by 2030 ($31.61).

7 countries will see their gender gaps narrow

While gaps are expected to widen in most countries, some countries4 are projected to experience a narrowing of the gender gap. Moldova’s narrowing of its gender gap, which after Serbia and Kosovo is currently the third-smallest in Europe at $19.97 in favor of women, is expected to narrow its gap to only $0.71 by 2030, by far the lowest in all of Europe. The largest narrowing of the gap over the next decade is expected to come from Great Britain. The gap, which is currently in favor of men, is expected to narrow from $552.02 today to $443.67. An equivalent narrowing of the gap is also expected to happen in Denmark (from $458.69 to $356.01). Overall, the average narrowing of the gap across these 7 countries is expected to be $56.64 whereas the average widening of the gap in the other 33 countries is expected to be $139.01.

If the gender gap is going to close, more work needs to be done across Europe. Women have less spending power than men in 80% of the countries in Europe. While advanced economies such as Germany and Switzerland seem to be putting measures in place to prevent the spending power gender gap from widening, efforts such as those implemented by Denmark and Great Britain are needed in order for both genders to be equal from a spending power perspective.

  1. Albania, Ireland, Iceland, Luxembourg, North Macedonia, Norway, and Sweden.
  2. In our analysis, Europe includes the following countries: Albania, Austria, Belgium. Belarus, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Estonia, Finland, France, Great Britain, Greece, Croatia, Hungary, Ireland, Iceland, Italy, Kosovo, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Latvia, Moldova, North Macedonia, Malta, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, and Ukraine.
  3. Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Moldova, North Macedonia, Portugal, Russia, and Serbia.
  4. Germany, Denmark, Great Britain, Greece, Moldova, Malta, and Slovakia.

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