Economic snapshot | Trade and Globalization

Progress slows in shrinking of the gender wage gap

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A weekly presentation of downloadable charts and short analyses designed to graphically illustrate important economic issues. Updated every Wednesday.

Snapshot for February 2, 2000

Progress slows in shrinking of the gender wage gap

How has the gender gap changed in the past 20 years? The chart below shows that, after shrinking throughout the 1980s, the gap stopped closing in the mid-1990s. Two factors account for the closing of the gap throughout the 1980s — the 9% fall in the male median wage and the 6% increase in the female median wage. But the growth of the median female wage slowed in the 1990s, and that of the median male reversed course and began to finally increase again. Since about 1993, both have grown about 3% in real terms. As long as they both grow at a similar pace, the gender gap will remain unchanged.

Source: EPI analysis of CPS data.

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