The Economic Perspective: “Update on the Gender Pay Gap”

This is Mary Walden with economist MW welcoming you to the economic perspective. Today’s program looks at an update on the gender pay gap.  Recently the nation observed “pay equity day,” a day that notices how much less, on average, women earn compared to men.  What do the latest statistics show on the pay of women versus men?


Mike:  Summary Answer

  1. Bad news – average working woman earns 79 cents of what average working man earns
  2. However, this number has been steadily rising over time
  3. Most recognize this is an apples to oranges comparison – doesn’t account for fact that women and men are in different occupations and have different educational and other work traits
  4. So an alternative number has been developed called the controlled – or adjusted – gender gap
  5. Compares pay of men and women with same qualification in terms of factors like education and experience
  6. The controlled pay gap is now 98 cents – reflects increasing education, experience, and success of women in the workplace
  7. I’m MW


Mary:  And I’m Mary Walden for the Economic Perspective, an NC State Extension program from the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.