Female-to-Male Earnings Ratio – Kevin Drum Would be a Better Labor Secretary

On August 29, Kevin Drum noted:

The good news is that women are now making 77% as much as men, slightly higher than last year. The bad news is that this is only because the median income of women fell at a slightly lower rate (-1.3%) than the median income of men (-1.8%). Yipee.

On August 31, the Department of Labor released America’s Workforce: Strong, Competitive and Growing, which included all sorts of great news for working women including:

What has been called the “pay gap” is shrinking and is now the smallest it has ever been since the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) began tracking this data.

Max Sawicky calls this Chao Time as he points us to an analysis from Sylvia Allegretto:

After an increase in the gap from 2002 to 2003, the gap shrunk over the last two years. However, as the Figure shows, these declines were solely due to the fact that earnings have fallen for both men and women, but have fallen more so for men – not a desirable scenario. Amazingly, the Department of Labor brags that the gender gap in pay is now the smallest ever, while completely ignoring how we got there. Following current earnings trends, the Figure projects what more “good news” of this sort would bring in the decades ahead. It turns out the gender gap would completely close in 2024, when earnings for full-time, full-year workers would be just under $25,000 – 40% below today’s level for men and 22% for women.

Now I suspect Kevin would not wish to work for the Bush Administration and he says he is not an economist. But his blog is a more reliable source for information on our economy than the crew who works for this White House.