National / Social Issues

Ratio of working moms in Japan tops 70% for first time

JIJI

Working moms accounted for 70.8 percent of all mothers in 2017, breaking the 70 percent line for the first time, according to the labor ministry.

The ratio rose 3.6 points from 2016, setting a record high, the ministry’s comprehensive survey of living conditions showed Friday.

The ministry noted that more companies are adopting child care leave and shorter working hours, encouraging the number of working moms to grow in line with the government’s policy of drawing more women into the workforce as the population shrinks.

Of the moms, 24.7 percent were regular workers, 37 percent were nonregular workers and 9.1 percent were executives, part-time staff or in other situations, the survey showed.

It also revealed that 23.3 percent of all households in the country had children in 2017 — about half the 46.2 percent logged in 1986.

Average household income in 2016 rose 2.7 percent from the year before to ¥5,602,000, up for the third consecutive year.

Median income stood at ¥4.42 million, with 61.5 percent of all households earning less than the average.

In the meantime, 55.8 percent of people said they were leading a hard life in 2017, down for the third year in a row.

The results of the survey, conducted in June and July last year, were based on answers from 46,399 households queried about their household composition, and on answers from 6,541 households asked about their income and other subjects.

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