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Earnings gap closing but women 'paid £9,000 less than men'

Published 06/11/2015

Men still earn more than women on average
Men still earn more than women on average

Women's pay has increased at twice the rate of men's over the past five years but they still earn on average £9,000 less, new data suggests.

Women's earnings increased by 8% between 2009 and 2014, compared to 4% for men, according to Halifax.

However, the average salary for a man in full time employment was £37,028, in 2014 - the latest year data is available. That is almost a third (32%) higher than the £27,991 paid to female full-time staff.

The Halifax data also highlighted how "traditional gender roles" remained in place for most working families, with more than a third (37%) of all working women in part-time employment, compared to just one in ten (9%) men.

Men were also twice as likely to be self-employed as women (19% against 10%).

Giles Martin, head of savings at Halifax, said: "In terms of pay, women have fared better than men since the economic recovery began. Whilst this has helped to reduce the economic and financial gap between the genders, there is still a substantial difference in average salaries when in full time employment."

"Despite the economic outlook brightening, there are lots of financial pressures facing families, and planning for the long term as well as the short term is key irrespective of gender or income."

Earlier this week, the Women and Equalities Committee launched an inquiry into Government strategy on gender pay, claiming more needed to be done to help women aged 40 and over in particular.

The committee said that, while younger women in full-time work experienced a "very low or even reversed gender pay gap", the gap for hourly earnings grew sharply from the age of 40 onwards.

Committee chair Maria Miller said: "The gender pay gap is mainly a problem for women over 40, and currently hits women in their 50s even harder.

"However, the measures already announced by the Government do not target this group. Our inquiry aims to fill this gap in Government thinking.

"We will be asking about barriers to promotion; recruitment and training; problems facing women in predominantly female sectors and non-professional roles - and much more.

"Our inquiry will make recommendations that will tackle the gender pay gap where it hits the hardest."

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