Women could give the US economy a $1.6 trillion boost, says S&P Global CEO

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Getting more women involved in the U.S. economy could generate a $1.6 trillion boost, S&P Global President and CEO Doug Peterson told CNBC on Monday.

“In our research the last couple years, we’ve been looking at what would be the impact on markets if women had a higher participation rate? And we used Norway as kind of the benchmark,” Peterson told CNBC’s Jim Cramer on “Mad Money.”

“In the United States, if we were operating [at] the same level of women’s participation as Norway, our economy would be 8 percent bigger, $1.6 trillion larger, than it is right now,” the CEO said.

Better yet, having women enter and stay in the U.S. workforce could add some $5.8 trillion to the total global market cap, he said.

Besides presiding over the S&P 500 index, S&P Global offers a host of financial analytics services to market-watchers, industry bodies and other organizations.

Since becoming CEO in 2013, Peterson has introduced several initiatives focused on gender equality, including this study and a hashtag highlighting the benefits of closing the gender gap: #ChangePays.

“What inspired us is that, as we saw the women in our organization flourishing and we see the kinds of opportunities there are for people coming to the workforce, [it] really, really required us to take a stand,” Peterson told Cramer, acknowledging that he and his company can also do more to hire and promote women.

“It starts with the tone at the top, and we believe that starts with our board, it starts with me, and we also have a lot more to do ourselves,” he said.

S&P Global’s stock inched up Monday, ending the day 0.28 percent higher at $194.13.

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