Designing “money” as one of the domains on which the Gender Equality Index is based is due to two important reasons: firstly, the will to address the degrading phenomenon of the feminisation of poverty and the differences in income, and then more generally to assess the equality in the chances women and men have to access financial resources.

Basically, this domain consists of indicators measuring how far each Member States is (and even the European Union as a whole) to reach the equal economic independence of women and men; the composite domain is formed by two sub-domains, respectively called “financial resources” and “economic situation”. 

As for what regards the first indicator, which measures the differences in income and in monthly earnings in each country between women and men, it is measured through the so called “artificial currency”, since in the European Union more than one kind of currency is present. They used the “PPS”, that is the “purchasing power standards”[1].

In spite of the undeniable importance and utility of this indicator, it is essential to underline that is might in certain cases underestimate the real situation, since in order to do the calculation there is the assumption that each member of the household earns equally a part of the income. It does not take into consideration the possibility of gender gaps or facts related to power relations that can alter the distribution of income within the household: however, it gives a quite concise idea of the situation of women throughout Europe in terms of acquired financial resources.

Basically, except for five Member States, on average until 2010 women were more at risk  of poverty than men, since data showed that gender gap had increased in those years.

[1]PPS is the technical term used by Eurostat for the common currency in which national accounts aggregates are expressed when adjusted for price level differences when using “purchasing power parities”, which can be interpreted as the exchange rate  of the PPS against the  Euro.


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