How much in lifetime earnings does it cost you to be a woman?
That’s a question posed by the National Women’s Law Center, and its analysis was eye-opening. On average, in America, a woman who is starting her career now will earn $430,480 less than a male counterpart over the course of a 40-year career. If you happen to be an African American or Native American woman, your earnings will be more than $870,000 less, and Latina women will miss out on more than $1 million in lifetime wages.
Some states have greater disparities than others—including North Dakota, Wyoming, Louisiana, West Virginia, Utah, Michigan and Nevada—but all states (see accompanying map) report gaps. In the most equal state—Florida—women earn “just” $248,120 less than their male counterparts over a 40-year career.
So if you want to enjoy a prosperous worklife in America, the formula is simple: make sure you’re born male, and be especially careful about being born into one of the minority populations.
About the Author: Bob Veres has been a commentator, author and consultant in the financial services industry for more than 20 years. Over his 20-year career in the financial services world, Mr. Veres has worked as editor of Financial Planning magazine; as a contributing editor to the Journal of Financial Planning; as a columnist and editor-at-large of Dow Jones Investment Advisor magazine; and as editor of Morningstar’s advisor web site: MorningstarAdvisor.com.
Mr. Veres has been named one of the most influential people in the financial planning profession by Investment Advisor magazine and Financial Planning magazine, was granted the NAPFA Special Achievement Award by the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and most recently the Heart of Financial Planning Distinguished Service Award from the Denver-based Financial Planning Association.