• Equal Pay For Equal Work?

    Feb 7 • Gender Issues, Households, Labor • 314 Views

    Having read that “Women Now A Majority In American Workplace” (NY Times, 2/6/10, A10), I wondered how much the wage differential had changed from the 1980s when women’s weekly earnings averaged close to 70 percent of men’s. The Institute for Women’s Policy Research had some interesting numbers in a recent publication.

    1. On average, men earn more than women. Looking at the 500 occupations in which data has been analyzed, only five have women earning as much or more than men.
    2. Women’s earnings as a percent of men’s: 79.94 percent (Women/$638 v. Men/$798)
    3. Women earn less than men in the ten most common jobs women hold.
    4. In high paying occupations, women earn less than men.
    5. Examples of median weekly earnings (2008):
    Secretaries: Women/$638 Men/$798
    Elementary school teachers: Women/$871 Men/$994
    Pharmacists: Women/$1647 Men/$1914
    Lawyers: Women/$1509 Men/$1875

    The Economic Lesson
    Labor force statistics include Participation Rates. Defined as a statistic that compares the size of the labor force to its potential total, female participation rates recently have been 60 percent while male participation rates were close to 75 percent. Figures are for 2008 from the Census Bureau’s 2010 Statistical Abstract, Table 579.

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  • The Visible and the Invisible

    Feb 6 • Thinking Economically • 230 Views

    Supporting free trade in 1978, Milton Friedman (1912-2006) referred to

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  • A More Stylish Barbie

    Feb 5 • Thinking Economically • 323 Views

    According to a recent WSJ article, Mattel

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  • Is The Unemployment Rate Accurate?

    Feb 4 • Thinking Economically • 275 Views

    My class has wondered, with a civilian labor force of over 150 million people, how unemployment statistics can possibly be accurate.

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  • Unemployment History

    Feb 3 • Labor, Macroeconomic Measurement • 287 Views

    With unemployment data scheduled for a Friday release, it might be helpful to place the numbers in perspective. The Dallas Fed has illustrated the following conclusions through a series of graphs comparing employment trends now to past recessions.

    1. The unemployment rate is rising faster than any previous recession since WW II.
    2. Showing somewhat of a mirror image of #1, civilian employment is steeply falling.
    3. Current unemployment levels are far less than during the Great Depression.
    4. While the civilian labor force can grow during a recession, recently, the numbers have fallen.

    The Economic Lesson
    To be defined as a member of the labor force, an individual is:
    -16 years old or older
    -unemployed and looking for a paying job

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