According to a MasterCard survey ahead of International Women,s Day next week, women in the Asia-Pacific region are feeling slightly more empowered as the socioeconomic gap with men narrows.
The poll of women in 14 economies across the region including China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, produced an average index score of 85.57 this year, up from 84.47 last year.
A score under 100 indicates gender inequality in favor of males while a reading of over 100 means bias towards females, MasterCard said in a report this week.
The survey also showed more women perceive themselves to be drawing incomes above the median average at 80 women per 100 men compared to 75 women per 100 men in 2009.
More women were also enrolling for university degrees, it said.
"Women continue to make strides in labor force participation and tertiary education enrollment and we are glad to see this translating into a greater sense of self worth in terms of their earning capabilities," said Georgette Tan, MasterCard's regional vice president for communications.
"This may explain the increased number of women who are viewing themselves as the major financial decision maker in their households. It is heartening to note that women are feeling more empowered."
The socioeconomic gap with men has narrowed in half of the 14 economies polled. International Women's Day is observed on March 8.