pay gap amoung industries hiring MBAs

Women business grads earn almost $15,000 less than their male counterparts in their first year out of school

pay gap amoung industries hiring MBAsThat’s according to a new analysis that pretty thoroughly debunks the myth that the gender pay gap is entirely, or even primarily, due to women’s career choices. At ThinkProgress, Bryce Covert explains:

Bloomberg Businessweek looked at nearly 10,000 of this year’s male and female MBA graduates, who are usually young and childless, ambitious, and all of whom had a full-time job lined up. Despite the fact that this weeds out those have different work experience, seek flexibility in order to care for children, want part-time jobs, or just don’t aim for the top, women got starting salaries that were almost $15,000 less than those for men.

While the analysis finds that women are more likely to go into lower paying fields, even within industries they’ll be paid less. In 17 of 22 industries, women were offered less starting money than men. In finance, for example, women’s salaries were $22,000 lower, while they were $12,300 lower in tech and $11,500 in consulting.

This study is consistent with previous research showing that in other fields too most women start their careers off at lower pay than their male counterparts, leading to a pay gap at every level of education and pretty much every industry, including female-dominated ones.

The fact that women are more likely than men to cut back on paid work when they have children does help explain why the gap grows over the course of their careers, but that’s a “choice” that can’t truly be called a choice given our lack of family-friendly policies and the fact that since the pay gap exists from the get-go, many families are making a very rational economic calculous about whose career should be prioritized. But, ultimately, as Covert notes, “only about 10 percent of the gap between women’s and men’s wages can be explained by different work histories.”

St. Paul, MN

Maya Dusenbery is executive director in charge of editorial at Feministing. She is the author of the forthcoming book Doing Harm: The Truth About How Bad Medicine and Lazy Science Leave Women Dismissed, Misdiagnosed, and Sick (HarperOne, March 2018). She has been a fellow at Mother Jones magazine and a columnist at Pacific Standard magazine. Her work has appeared in publications like,, Bitch Magazine, as well as the anthology The Feminist Utopia Project. Before become a full-time journalist, she worked at the National Institute for Reproductive Health. A Minnesota native, she received her B.A. from Carleton College in 2008. After living in Brooklyn, Oakland, and Atlanta, she is currently based in the Twin Cities.

Maya Dusenbery is an executive director of Feministing and author of the forthcoming book Doing Harm on sexism in medicine.

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