Finance sector records largest pay gap

The financial and insurance services sector has the largest gender pay gap among all industries, a new report showed.

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA), in collaboration with the Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC) released the report, which showed the sector continued to record the largest full-time gender pay gap when measured by either base salary or total remuneration.

Full-time female employees could expect to earn on average around $30,000 or 26 per cent less each year in base salary than men employed within the industry.

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“This gap increases to more than $52,000 or 33 per cent when taking into account additional remuneration including superannuation, bonuses, and other discretionary pay,” the report said.

Women earned $105,438 per annum in the sector while men earned $157,794 on average. In 2014/15, women earned $99,725 while men earned $153,521, a 35 per cent gap.

The report also showed the gender pay gap increased with seniority, climbing to 26.5 per cent for top-tier managers, with an annual difference of more than $93,000 in total remuneration.

Report author and BCEC Principal Research Fellow Associate Professor Rebecca Cassells said the report illustrated the different ways women and men engaged with the workforce and how their contributions were valued.

“Not only do female-dominated organisations tend to be lower paid, but this analysis shows that in workplaces with heavily female-dominated management teams there are large gender pay gaps in favour of men,” Cassells said.

“It seems that where the men are few, they are more highly valued.”

Co-author and BCEC director, Professor Alan Duncan said organisations that increased the number of women in executive leadership roles by more than 10 per cent between 2015 and 2016 saw a reduction in company-wide gender pay gap of three percentage points over a single year.

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