CHART: More Women Are The Main Breadwinners, Especially In Bad Times

The main breadwinner in one out of four Australian households is now a female and this proportion increases during hard times.

The rise in the two income family has been dramatic. Now 58 per cent of all ‘couple with children’ families have both parents in the work force compared to 40 per cent in the 1980s.

It’s not a surprise that both work. Do the numbers on buying a house in a state capital city. Two incomes are a requirement.

This is one of many findings in the AMP.NATSEM Income and Wealth Report Modern Family which explores the changing shape of Australian families.

This chart gives a state by state breakdown.

Note the high proportion of females in couples working in Tasmania where unemployment is bad. Families with relatively low incomes are more likely to rely on female breadwinners.

The study found that women are more likely to be working during hard times, such as the Global Financial Crisis, perhaps because men are more exposed to job losses and reduced shifts.

In Western Australia, a beneficiary of the mining boom and where retail sales are still firm, the proportion of female breadwinners is smaller.

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