From Arab News:
A large portion of the Kingdom’s wealth is in the hands of its women who are believed to be sitting on cash totaling $11.9 billion.
“The Kingdom has a veritable treasure trove of human and financial capital in the form of its women who control a large portion of the country’s wealth,” said a report released on Monday by the Cayman Islands-based asset management firm Al-Masah Capital.
Women constitute almost 45 percent of the country’s population, and have a literacy rate of 79 percent. Yet, only 65 percent of them are employed, revealing the huge potential for women employment. In fact 78.3 percent of unemployed women are university graduates.
The report, titled “The Saudi Woman — A catalyst for change,” stated that women could become a major growth driver for the country’s diversification policy with their considerable wealth, which is lying idle, being channeled into the country’s money supply.
Saudi women are not alone. Women in the Middle East controlled 22 percent or $0.7 trillion of the region’s total assets under management (AUM) in 2009. The region, consequently, ranked fifth globally in terms of AUM controlled by women.