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The gender wage gap in weekly earnings for full-time workers in the United States widened between 2017 and 2018. In 2018, the ratio of women’s to men’s median weekly full-time earnings was 81.1 percent, a decrease of 0.7 percent since 2017, when the ratio was 81.8 percent, leaving a wage gap of 18.9 percent, compared with 18.1 percent in 2016.Women’s median weekly earnings for full-time work were $789 in 2018 compared with $973 for men. Adjusting for inflation, women’s median earnings stayed unchanged compared with the previous year; men’s earnings increased by 0.9 percent since 2017.
Another measure of the wage gap, the ratio of women’s and men’s median annual earnings for full-time, year-round workers, was 80.5 percent in 2017 (data for 2018 are not yet available). An earnings ratio of 80.5 percent means that the gender wage gap for full-time, year-round workers is 19.5 percent.
The gender earnings ratio for full-time, year-round workers, which includes self-employed workers, tends to be slightly lower than the ratio for weekly earnings (which excludes the self-employed and earnings from annual bonuses, and includes full-time workers who work only part of the year). Both earnings ratios are for full-time workers only. When all workers with earnings are included, the gap in earnings is much larger because women are more likely than men to work part-time or take time out of paid work to manage childrearing and other caregiving work. Over a 15 year period women workers’ earnings were just 49 percent—less than half—of men’s earnings, a wage gap of 51 percent in 2001-2015
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