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Sunday October 30, 2005
EVER wondered about the wow factor that makes women in Asia tick? Or specifically in Malaysia?
A recent study by media communications specialist OMD aptly titled WOW (The Wonders of Women) revealed, for example, that Malaysia has the highest number of women earning as much as their spouses (50%) in the seven key Asian markets captured in the study.
The women, primarily from the Kuala Lumpur and Petaling Jaya area, said they are not worried that they may be earning the same as their spouses because they feel they are making a worthwhile contribution to the family as well.
It is an important aspiration for most women to be financially independent, they said.
Furthermore, their strong earning power acts as a financial security blanket and also a form of assurance to help them cushion against the effect of a failed marriage or perhaps, simply to pamper and reward themselves whenever they wish.
Reflecting similar sentiments of many, one woman said, “I can’t imagine asking my husband for money for a manicure or to buy an expensive bag”.
The OMD study focused on the more affluent and highest educated women (those with at least a college education) in order to better understand their potential and propensity to spend as well as their influence on their peers and family.
The WOW women form between 20-35% of the total women population in their respective markets, and specifically in Malaysia, this group makes up 23% of all women in KL and PJ.
Among the key points are:
Variation by markets suggested that the status and position of women in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore are more advanced than those in the Philippines, Thailand and Malaysia with women in China fast catching up.
In Malaysia, Chinese and Malay women have different perception of beauty. Most of the Chinese women are realistic about what beauty means. To them, it is about confidence, elegance and knowing how to enjoy life. To the Malays, natural beauty is important to reflect the image of the Muslim women. However, knowing how to dress up and to beautify oneself with make-up and accessories is also important. In Taiwan, 83% of women believe that beautiful women have an advantage in life.
Malay women are the most successful in keeping their private savings secret from their spouses!
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