These 10 U.S. Cities Pay Women Workers the Best, So Maybe It's Time to Relocate
During last week’s State of the Union address, President Obama noted that although women make up half of today’s workforce, they still only earn about 77 cents for every dollar a man makes. Like so many of the things I write about, I can’t believe equal pay is even still an issue. But are there cities in the U.S. where the pay is better for women? Are there even – gasp – cities where women make the same amount as men?
In an effort to answer these burning questions, Forbes asked their buddies at NerdWallet to crunch some numbers. Using data gathered from the 2012 American Community Survey by the U.S. Census — the most current data available — they tracked the median earnings of men and women working full-time in over 500 of the country’s major metropolitan areas. Then they ranked them based on how high the median salaries for women are, including what percentage of men’s they average out to be.
The winner? San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA, with the median salary for women being $56,000 — almost, as Forbes points out, triple the median salary in the worst-paying city for women ($24,7000 in Laredo, TX). But in spite of that, women’s income still comes out at only 74 percent of men’s. Other cities had lower median salaries that came out to a higher percentage of what men are earning; but even looking at those figures, the highest score was 84 percent in San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont and New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island – a whole 16 percent lower than men’s incomes.
Of course, these figures don’t address factors like which fields women gravitate towards versus which ones men tend to go into (men’s often pay more – for example, software engineers, predominantly male, tend to make more than receptionists, predominantly female). Clearly we’ve got a lot of issues left to address. Still, though — there are areas of the country where women in the workforce are paid more than in others, and the statistics back it up.
1. San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, CA
Women's median salary: $56,000 Women's income as a percentage of men's: 74%
2. Washington D.C., Arlington, Alexandria, VA
Women's median salary: $55,500 Women's income as a percentage of men's: 80%
3. San Francisco, Oakland, Fremont, CA
Women's median salary: $54,600 Women's income as a percentage of men's: 84%
4. Bridgeport, Stamford, Norwalk, CT
Women's median salary: $52,500 Women's income as a percentage of men's: 72%
5. Trenton, Ewing, NJ
Women's median salary: $50,400 Women's income as a percentage of men's: 81%
6. Boston, Cambridge, Quincy, MA
Women's median salary: $50,100Women's income as a percentage of men's: 79%
7. Hartford, West Hartford, East Hartford, CT
Women's median salary: $48,500Women's income as a percentage of men's: 78%
8. New York, Northern New Jersey, Long Island
Women's median salary: $47,600Women's income as a percentage of men's: 84%
9. Boulder, CO
Women's median salary: $46,800Women's income as a percentage of men's: 72%
10. Baltimore, Towson, MD
Women's median salary: $46, 800Women's income as a percentage of men's: 79%