Women overtake men as majority of U.S. workforce

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL:

Women held more U.S. jobs than men in December for the first time in nearly a decade, a development that likely reflects the future of the American workforce.

The share of women on payrolls, excluding farmworkers and the self-employed, exceeded the share of men in December for the first time since mid-2010, Labor Department data released Friday showed. Women held 50.04% of jobs last month, surpassing men on payrolls by 109,000.

The [jobs] report strongly suggests that the labor market dynamics are tilting in the direction of women,” Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US, said in a note to clients. “We all often look for tangible evidence of change. It is now here in the data and can be used as a benchmark to measure equality and inequality in the labor force and the economy.”

The gap between men and women on payrolls had been narrowing over recent years, reflecting growth in services industries that employ higher numbers of women, such as health care.

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