Half the nation's jobs are performed by female workers, but newresearch shows women fall behind men on their use and understandingof benefits that can protect their income.

According to a new survey by The Hartford Financial ServicesGroup, men have higher participation rates for income protectionbenefits, such as life and disability insurance, while women havehigher participation in health benefits, including medical anddental coverage.

Sixty-four percent of women wage earners said they "completelyor mostly" understand life insurance compared with 79 percent ofmen. And 61 percent of women workers said they have life insurancethrough their employer, compared to 68 percent of men.

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