Des Moines' young women make $5K less than men
Des Moines women under 30 earn 87% of what their male counterparts make, a recent Pew Research analysis of census data through 2019 finds.
- Median annual earnings among young women working full-time, year-round was $34,518. That's $5,189 less than young men.
Why it matters: Wage inequities hurt everyone.
- Equal pay would reduce poverty and add hundreds of billions of dollars a year to the U.S. economy, according to the Institute for Women's Policy Research.
The big picture: Nationally, women ages 16-29 earn 93%, on average, of what men make, according to Pew's review.
- Midwest metros tend to have the widest gaps, with young women earning about 90% of young men, Pew found.
Of note: Earning disparities between the sexes tend to widen with age, Pew noted.
- And women with kids typically face a wage penalty, Marianne Cooper, a sociologist at Stanford, tells Axios' Emily Peck.
Zoom in: Of the 250 metro areas in the study, Des Moines ranked in the bottom half, at No. 166.
- Young men work slightly more hours than women on a national basis, according to the Pew study. If that factor is true in DSM, it could help explain a portion of the metro's gap, Iowa economist Peter Orazem tells Axios.
Iowa City, on the other hand, is one of 16 metros across the country where young women out-earn men.
- The 1% difference equated to $274 more for Iowa City's female workers under 30 in 2019.
What they're saying: Health care jobs pay better than many other industries and often have a larger percent of women workers, William Boal, a Drake economics professor, tells Axios.
- A large employer in Iowa City is the University of Iowa and that likely contributed to its ranking, he says.
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