June 24, 2010

Study Finds Income Gender Gap Among Advisors

A recent report from the American College found that while income increases for both financial advisors throughout their careers, it increases at a lower rate for women.

The study analyzed producers in the financial services industry and found that 59 percent of men who had been in the industry over 16 years had earnings over $100,000 per year, while less than 40 percent of women with the same experience had equivalent earnings.

"The statistics concerning the compensation of female financial advisors are troubling, particularly in light of the burgeoning economic power women now hold," Mary Quist-Newins, assistant professor of women's studies and the State Farm Chair in Women & Financial Services at The American College, said in a press release. "It is widely estimated that American women today own half the nation's wealth - and that their ownership share will grow to two-thirds by 2030."

Several factors affect the compensation gap, the survey found, but less time in the workplace is a large factor. Nearly 70 percent of women in the study have at least one child, the survey found, contributing to the income gap. And, while three-quarters of women have a spouse or domestic partner, 87 percent of those respondents said their significant other worked outside the home, compared with two-thirds of men have a wife who works. Those with a working spouse, the study found, are twice as likely to turn responsibilities over to that person as women are.

The amount of hours worked each week varied between genders, as well. Over 20 percent of women reported working between 30 and 39 hours per week, compared with 15.6 percent of men. More women than men reported working between 40 and 49 hours per week (47.1 percent vs. 40 percent, respectively), but more men work 50-59 hours per week (27.6 percent) than women (20.2 percent).

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