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Setting a Trend: Feminisation of the Commercial Bank Sector in Sweden, 1864-1975

Holmberg, Kajsa LU and Stanfors, Maria LU (2009) In Business and Economic History On-Line 7.
Abstract
When Stockholms Enskilda Bank hired two women in 1864, it was
presumably the first bank in the world to do so. The fashion of
hiring women gradually spread, and bank telling became femaledominated.
We describe and analyze this process, identifying three
periods in the feminization of the Swedish commercial bank
sector. Economic, institutional, technological, and cultural factors
were all instrumental in feminization; their relative importance
varied over time. During our study period, banking went through
radical changes, bringing it closer to ―women’s work‖; thus,
feminization proceeded without radical changes in social norms or
views on female labor. The commercial bank sector’s loss of... (More)
When Stockholms Enskilda Bank hired two women in 1864, it was
presumably the first bank in the world to do so. The fashion of
hiring women gradually spread, and bank telling became femaledominated.
We describe and analyze this process, identifying three
periods in the feminization of the Swedish commercial bank
sector. Economic, institutional, technological, and cultural factors
were all instrumental in feminization; their relative importance
varied over time. During our study period, banking went through
radical changes, bringing it closer to ―women’s work‖; thus,
feminization proceeded without radical changes in social norms or
views on female labor. The commercial bank sector’s loss of status
as a male workplace began in the early twentieth century,
preceding feminization, rather than following it, and creating an
opening for women. Employers’ economic incentives were also
important in the feminization process; women made their
strongest advances during times when employers had strong
incentives to cut costs. (Less)
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Contribution to journal
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in press
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Business and Economic History On-Line
volume
7
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
d2f4bf47-dce7-4e0d-a2cd-859def6efea3 (old id 1515400)
alternative location
http://www.thebhc.org/publications/BEHonline/2009/holmbergandstanfors.pdf
date added to LUP
2011-01-19 11:09:10
date last changed
2016-07-06 13:03:55
@misc{d2f4bf47-dce7-4e0d-a2cd-859def6efea3,
  abstract     = {When Stockholms Enskilda Bank hired two women in 1864, it was<br/>presumably the first bank in the world to do so. The fashion of<br/>hiring women gradually spread, and bank telling became femaledominated.<br/>We describe and analyze this process, identifying three<br/>periods in the feminization of the Swedish commercial bank<br/>sector. Economic, institutional, technological, and cultural factors<br/>were all instrumental in feminization; their relative importance<br/>varied over time. During our study period, banking went through<br/>radical changes, bringing it closer to ―women’s work‖; thus,<br/>feminization proceeded without radical changes in social norms or<br/>views on female labor. The commercial bank sector’s loss of status<br/>as a male workplace began in the early twentieth century,<br/>preceding feminization, rather than following it, and creating an<br/>opening for women. Employers’ economic incentives were also<br/>important in the feminization process; women made their<br/>strongest advances during times when employers had strong<br/>incentives to cut costs.},
  author       = {Holmberg, Kajsa and Stanfors, Maria},
  language     = {eng},
  series       = {Business and Economic History On-Line},
  title        = {Setting a Trend: Feminisation of the Commercial Bank Sector in Sweden, 1864-1975},
  volume       = {7},
  year         = {2009},
}