On average, a woman has to work 103 extra days to catch up to what a man makes in a year.
Women make on average only 81% as much money as men. If a man makes $50,000 a year, a woman is statistically likely to make only $39,000. In fact the typical American man does make $50,000 and the typical woman makes $39,000.
So how long does a woman have to work to make up the shortfall? The typical woman worked 365 days to earn her $39,000, and needs to make an additional $11,000 to catch up to the man. Since her annual pay of $39,000 divided by 365 days is $107, the woman makes about $107 per day. At that rate, she’ll have to work an extra 103 days to catch up to the man. That’s almost a third of a year.
Meanwhile, the man has earned an additional $14,110 while the woman has spent January, February, March and almost half of April playing catchup, as the graphic above shows.
The Changing Gender Gap
The gender gap has shrunk over the past 35 years. The chart below shows that women older than 16, shown by the pink dotted line, made about 62% of what men made back in 1979. Since then, women have caught up somewhat, reaching about 81% of male earnings by the present day. The bad news is, the gains have leveled off over the past few years.
The different colored lines show women of different age groups. Young women between 16 and 34 earn the most compared to men, at around 90%. This may be because those women are in entry level jobs. Middle aged and older women fare the worst, at about 75% to 77% of male earnings. This might be because women are being shut out of higher paying jobs and denied promotions as men of advancing age make gains in those areas.
Some analysts have a different take on the numbers.
Related: Women Still Make Less Than Men
Do Women Choose Lower Paying Jobs?
The video below claims that the gender/pay gap between men and women is a result of the career and education choices women make. The video, presented by Professor Steven Horowitz at St. Lawrence University and LearnLiberty.org, says women are less likely than men to pursue careers in engineering and other high paying jobs than men. It also says social norms place a heavier burden on women to care for children, which results in women spending less time than men advancing their careers. Horowitz says the reason younger women are catching up to men faster than older women is that they’re making different choices about what jobs they aspire to. He also speculates that for the gender gap to see real change, men will have to take on a larger share of the childcare burden.
However, in another video, CBS News reporters refute the idea that women earn less than men because they make different career choices. They claim that even in specific high-paying jobs like engineering and medial careers, it becomes plain that women still make less than men.
The CBS video says the gender gap is even wider in states like Louisiana, West Virginia and Wyoming, where women make only 66% to 69% of what men do. However, women make a larger percentage of 84% to 91% in places like Washington D.C., New York and California. The video also says female lawyers only make about 80% of what male lawyers make, and female judges make only 72%. Female financial managers do even worse, making only about 64% of what male financial managers make. Female doctors make only 69% of what male doctors make.
Women Make Less Regardless of Their Choices
Which video is right? Do women make less because they choose lower paying careers or not? According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the CBS video is right. Women don’t actually make less than men because they don’t choose high-paying jobs careers in the legal, medical or engineering professions. Since women’s earnings lag in those fields as well, the logical conclusion is that women are simply paid less than men no matter what job they choose.
Article Source: Highlights of Women’s Earnings in 2013 – U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics