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Hong Kong Females Lead in Asia in Saving for Big Purchases: New MasterCard Index on Well-Being of Women

April 3, 2014 Statistics & Trends No Comments Email Email

Women in Hong Kong have positive views of their own well-being and lead in saving for big purchases across 16 markets in Asia/Pacific, according to the inaugural MasterCard Index of Well-Being.

The Index, based on a survey of 16 Asia/Pacific markets, aims to measure the level of well-being among women across markets byexploring the impact of wide-ranging factors. It covered women’s attitudes towards five categories: Work and FinancesSafety from ThreatsPersonal and Work SatisfactionPersonal Well-Being and Sense of Empowerment. The Index is calculated with zero as the most pessimistic, 100 as most optimistic and 50 as neutral, and details respondents’ thoughts on the six months ahead.

Hong Kong women are slightly optimistic in terms of their own well-being with an overall Index score of 66.5, ranking sixth in Asia/Pacific and above the regional average (62.7). The city slightly lagged behind China (67.4) yet ahead of Taiwan (55.0) and Singapore (61.4). However, women in developing markets including Myanmar (70.9), Indonesia (70.0) and Philippines (69.2) have most positive views of their own well-being and these three markets ranked top three in the region.

Across the five categories, local women are most self-assured in Work and Finances, with a score of 70.0. They are particularly confident in “saving for big purchases” with a remarkable score of 78.7, the figure not only well above the regional average (54.1) but also topping the chart in Asia/Pacific, revealing that women in Hong Kong are capable of setting money aside for larger purchases. Comparatively, women in Taiwan (60.5) and China (56.0) are less proficient in doing so. Local women are also equally optimistic when keeping up with bills, which scores the highest (78.8) among all components. 

Hong Kong respondents are on a par with their regional counterparts in terms of Personal Well-Being with a score of 63.3. Local females see themselves as having less financial stress, with a healthy score of 68.0. Yet, they are less positive when it comes to work-related stress (66.9); but worse, they reported higher levels of family stress (59.5) either emotionally or mentally. The family stress encountered by local women is similar with that reported in China (59.6), while Taiwanese females appear to face much more stress (43.8).

When it comes to Sense of Empowerment, Hong Kong women score the highest in terms of having their opinion on “day-to-day household” (72.0) and “day-to-day financial” decisions (68.0), equal or more weight compared to other family members. Yet, they score only 62.7 at the workplace, implying that their opinions are less valued compared to their opinions at home. The figure is lower than that of China (67.9) but still higher than Taiwan (54.3). Overall, local females are on a par with their regional counterparts with the same score of 67.5.

“It is encouraging to see that Hong Kong women feel optimistic about their overall well-being and especially about work and finances. However, the survey revealed that they found it challenging to strike a balance between work and personal life, with a score (65.0) below other  emerging markets such as India and China, indicating that more work needs to be done,” said Anna Yip, head of Hong Kong and Macau, MasterCard.

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