Updated January 24 at 4:24pm
WORKFORCE

BLS: R.I. women earned 81.4% what men did in 2011

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BOSTON – Women in Rhode Island earned 81.4 percent of the average wage for men in 2011, according to a new report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In 2011, women in Rhode Island who were full-time wage and salary workers had median weekly earnings of $746, 81.4 percent of the $917 median weekly earnings of men.

Comparatively, the average woman in the United States had median weekly earnings of $684, 82.2 percent of the $832 earned by the average man in the U.S.

In neighboring Massachusetts, which has seen the ratio of women’s to men’s earnings increase each of the last four years, women who were full-time wage and salary workers had median weekly earnings of $853, or 80.6 percent of the $1,058 median weekly earnings of their male counterparts.

The ratio of female-to-male earnings in 2011 varied across the U.S., ranging from 68.7 percent in Louisiana to 89.9 percent in California.

According to a BLS release, the differences among states reflect variation in occupations and industries and the age composition of each state’s labor force.

The BLS also noted that “comparisons by gender are on a broad level and do not control for factors such as educational attainment, which can be significant in explaining earnings differences.”

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