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overview: American women have lost 3.8 million jobs since the Covid-19 pandemic began. Though women’s labor force participation rate has edged up slightly to 57.5% from its pandemic-era low of 57.2% in April 2020, it remains well below the 59.2% recorded in February 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.


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Of the many reasons for this trend—including the fact that industries typically dominated by women were among the hardest hit by the economic effects of the coronavirus—research from the U.S. Census Bureau and Federal Reserve shows 32.1% of unemployed women ages 25 to 44 had left the workforce by July 2020 due to childcare demands, as compared to just 12.1% of men in that same group.

about the author

Vicky Valet

vicky valet is deputy editor of communities and leadership at forbes, where she covers the ever-changing workforce, entrepreneurs and executives.