Life Insurance Gender Gap Closes

March 25, 2011 ( - In 2010, almost six out of 10 women owned some sort of life insurance, which is on par with men’s life insurance ownership, according to a recent study conducted by LIMRA.

While life insurance ownership levels are down from 2004, the decline was smaller for women. However, when looking at coverage levels, on average, women’s coverage is only about 69% of men’s coverage.   

“In our recent studies of women’s sentiment toward life insurance, we found that women (70%) place more value on life insurance than men (62%),” said Cheryl Retzloff, senior research director, LIMRA markets research, in a press release.   

LIMRA noted that historically, men were known as the main breadwinners in a family. However, recent Pew research discovered that almost 30% of wives earn more money than their husbands. However, LIMRA found that wives’ life insurance ownership has not increased accordingly.   

According to the study, married households are less likely to buy individual life insurance for wives than for husbands. The good news is that the average amount of individual life insurance coverage for most wives who are insured has increased.  

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