Gender Wage Gap Stays Near 60% for Third Straight Year in 2013
Females were paid an average of approximately 60 cents for every dollar paid to males across all industries in Wyoming in 2013. This gender wage gap has remained relatively consistent since 2011 (see Figure 1).
The most recent earnings tables by county, industry, age, and gender (2000 to 2013) are now available from the Research & Planning (R&P) section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services at http://doe.state.wy.us/LMI/earnings_tables/2014/index.htm.
There are many factors that influence the gap in pay other than wages. These factors include the type of job worked, the industry in which the individual worked, and the number of hours worked each week.
The wage gap between males and females in Wyoming is often attributed to the industrial mix in the state – oil, gas, and mining jobs that are dominated by males typically pay well in Wyoming, offering a high average annual wage compared to other industries. One factor in the persistent wage gap may be “that men in Wyoming, especially those working in an expansion-related industry, receive comparatively high pay while women in Wyoming receive comparatively low or average pay” (Jones, 2008).
As previously demonstrated by R&P (Holmes, 2014), in counties where a high percentage of the total jobs worked are in the mining industry, the wage gap is wider than those counties where mining makes up a smaller portion of the industrial composition. For example, mining jobs made up approximately 35% of all jobs worked in Sublette and Campbell counties. These two counties had two of the widest gender wage gaps in the state, with females earning approximately 50 cents less per dollar earned by males (see Figure 2). Converse and Sweetwater counties also had large gaps in pay and mining jobs made up approximately 30% of all jobs worked in each county.
The wage gap is narrower in counties with large public administration and health care sectors, which include jobs that typically pay females a competitive wage. The educational services industry also tends to offer competitive wages for females. For example, in 2013, females working in the public administration industry in Wyoming earned 80.7% of males’ earnings on average. For a list of the gender wage gap by industry, see Table 1.
In both Laramie and Albany counties, mining jobs made up less than 1% of the total number of jobs worked. Laramie County has a high proportion of jobs in the public administration industry which, as previously noted, typically pay females a competitive wage compared to males. In Laramie County in 2013, females earned an average of 76.7 cents for every dollar males earned, and Laramie County had one of the narrowest wage gaps in the state (see Table 2). Albany County had one of the lowest wage gaps in the state, with females earning an average of 72.4 cents for every dollar males earned.
Platte, Sheridan, and Fremont counties also had fairly narrow wage gaps compared to the rest of the state, with females earning nearly 70% of what males earned annually in 2013.
Holmes, M. (2014). The gender wage gap in Wyoming. Wyoming Workforce Annual Report 2014 (in press).
Jones, S. (2008). Examining the wage gap in Wyoming’s counties. Wyoming Labor Force Trends, 45(8) http://doe.state.wy.us/lmi/0808/a1.htm.