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The U.S. has fallen four spots in the World Economic Forum's ranking of countries according to gender equality, landing in 49th of 144 countries. While the U.S. ranks first for closing the education gender gap, women are still far less likely to have positions of political power or to contribute economically, according to this year's report.

Expand chart

Data: World Economic Forum Global Gender Gap Report 2017; Chart: Lazaro Gamio / Axios

The global picture: This is the second year in a row that the report has found a regression in economic participation, with only 58% of the gap closed, which was the lowest score since 2008. While political empowerment of women compared to men has slowly been improving over the years, there was no change in the 23% gap from last year.

Other highlights from the report include:

  • 82 countries have improved the gender gap and 60 have seen their score decrease.
  • Nordic countries hold the top three spots for gender equality.
  • At the this rate, the gender gap will be closed in 100 years by 106 countries.
  • The US ranked 23rd in 2006.
  • The study found that 50% of all work women do is unpaid.
  • In the US, women only make up 19% of all graduates in the engineering, manufacturing and construction and information and communication technologies fields.

Note: The Global Gender Gap report measures the discrepancy between men and women's participation, opportunity and care in each country, but does not take into account the country's overall development compared to other countries. A wealthy nation with more opportunity and resources than others can still rank low on this list due to unequally distributing those resources to men and women.

Go deeper

Rohingya refugees sue Facebook over Myanmar hate speech

Internally displaced Rohingya peoples at a market area in the Baw Du Pha IDP Camp in Sittwe in Myanmar's western Rakhine state. Photo: STR/AFP via Getty Images

Rohingya refugees accused Facebook in a $150 million lawsuit filed Monday of amplifying hate speech against the persecuted minority Muslims in Myanmar via algorithms and failing to take down inflammatory posts.

Why it matters: Thousands of Rohingya Muslims have been killed in Myanmar in what the United Nations deemed a genocidal campaign. Tens of thousands of others have been displaced, notably following a massacre by Myanmar's military in 2017.

Former D.C. Guard alleges Army generals lied about Jan. 6 response

Members of the National Guard and Capitol police keep a small group of pro-Trump demonstrators away from the Capitol following the insurrection on Jan. 6. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

A former D.C. National Guard official has alleged that top Army generals "lied" to Congress in their testimony on the U.S. Capitol riot, Politico first reported Monday.

The big picture: Col. Earl Matthews, who was serving on Jan. 6, alleges in a memo that the official version on the military response is "worthy of the best Stalinist or North Korea propagandist" and that the Pentagon inspector general's November report on it features "myriad inaccuracies, false or misleading statements, or examples of faulty analysis."

Toyota to build $1.3 billion U.S. battery plant in North Carolina

The all-electric Toyota bZ4X, the company's first battery-electric vehicle, at the Los Angeles Auto Show in Los Angeles, California on Nov. 17. Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

Toyota announced Monday it's investing $1.3 billion to construct an electric vehicle battery "megasite" near Greensboro, North Carolina, set to open in 2025.

Why it matters: Toyota's Prius hybrid won environmental plaudits when it launched in 1997, but it has since lost ground to electric vehicle world leader Tesla, per Axios' Joann Muller. This battery plant will be the first to produce automotive batteries for Toyota in North America.

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