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New Research Shows UK’s Progress in Empowering Women is Sluggish

According to new research, the UK’s progress towards empowering women in the workplace has been sluggish when compared to other developed nations. Some of the key statistics from recent research revealed that:

  • Almost 80% of firms report gender pay gap in favour of men
  • The gender pay gap is widest when women turn 50
  • British men are nearly twice as likely as women to be entrepreneurs

The Gender Pay Gap

If it weren’t for the gender pay gap, women across the UK would collectively be paid £90bn more every year. Figures from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) show that the UK has slipped from the 14th spot last year to 15th; this ranking of 33 OECD countries is based on five indicators of female economic empowerment. At the moment, Iceland, Sweden and Norway hold the first three spots on the OECD’s list.

Having Children and Age

According to the TUC, the gender pay gap is widest when women turn 50. When women hit this point, the average woman working full-time earns £8,421 less per year than the average full-time working male. Having children also has a huge impact on a woman’s earnings. Women working full-time between the ages of 18 and 21 earn £1,845 less a year than their male peers. By the 30 (£3,670), that gap more than doubles in the following decade when women reach 40 (£7,400). Why? The TUC says this drastic change in the gap reflects the impact of motherhood and care responsibilities. When they return to work, they suffer from a huge pay penalty or – worst case – are unable to progress their careers.

The “Enterprise Gap”

Research conducted by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (an annual survey of 10,000 people) revealed that the proportion of working-age women that went into business is on the rise. Over a three-year period (2013-2016) the number of women who started a business rose 45 percent. However, men remain nearly twice as likely as women to pursue entrepreneurship. Between 2013 and 2016, reports show that 10.4 per cent of working-age men identified as entrepreneurs, compared to 5.5 per cent of women.

“While great progress is being made in some areas, sustained business action is needed to ensure that these gains continue,” says PwC economist Yong Jing Teow. “We need to ensure we’re implementing long-term solutions, not just quick fixes, to close the pay gap for good.”

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Author Bio: Electronic payments expert Taylor Cole is a passionate entrepreneur who also enjoys to write, play guitar and camp. Bestpaymentproviders is UK’s best merchant account comparison company, serving both traditional and high-risk merchants.

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