Sunday, November 01, 2009

PPP Adjusted Wage Gap

One of the more amusing scenes is the "Baby Boomer/60 Something Meat Market" which, if you're ever Twin Cities way you can see in all of its splendor and glory at a joint called "Red Stone" in Eden Prairie. Here you see, in a VERY general sense, men in their peak earning years picking up twice or thrice divorced who are still glitzed up thinking it's 1986. The tactics haven't much changed, but one of the more interesting ones I've seen is men putting their "Audi" or their "BMW" key chain on the bar so girls (well, women) can see what a fancy car they drive. Everyone is still dressed in designer clothes as if these things matter, but there was one thing that made my economic spidey senses tingle;

The men made bank while the women are still employed as hair salonists or waitresses or some other such profession.

Naturally the men buy, but as I waited for my baby boomer friend to show up, it got me thinking;

"Would the wage hap between men and women be closed if we adjusted for all the income transfers?"

Forget buying a lady a beer, just last night you could not have had a better example. $500 costume contest, and who does it go to?

The guy dressed as a sailor?
The guy dressed like Yoda?
Or the girl in a french maid outfit?

Of course this is peanuts to things like the money men fork over for dating, let alone in divorce settlements where I think the plurality of income/wealth transfers occur, but if we adjusted for that would there be an income gap at all?

Probably impossible to measure and we'll probably never know, but it would be interesting to see what the figures are.

7 comments:

Obelisk said...

That's a great point.

The man almost always ends up paying for dates. Never in my life has a woman ever paid for our date. At best, we went Dutch.

The man almost always enters a marriage with more assets, the benefits from which the women will enjoy.

In a divorce, the man almost always ends up with the smaller split.

Men work more dangerous jobs and their jobs are less stable too.

So that 22% pay gap is merely an offset for higher expenses.

PeppermintPanda said...

The #1 reason why the wage gap between men and women is so large is that women are (on average) out of the workforce for 11 years to raise children; and they often have different priorities when they return to the work force, which leads to them being promoted slower and not switching jobs (for higher wages) as often.

To make matters worse, while women are generally "better educated" (meaning they have university degrees) often the education they receive is of little value in the private sector. Degree fields like Computer Science, Engineering, and most trade schools produce very well paid graduates but tend to be dominated by men (and the percentage of women in these fields has steadily declined since the 1970s); and about the only career oriented fields which are dominated by women are nursing and education, and the income from these fields is very varied depending on where you work. When you have degree fields like English Lit, Psychology/Sociology, Political Science, Drama and (generally speaking) any Liberal Arts degree dominated by women even though they won’t find a job related to their degree their effort in school is wasted (and it just acts as another 4 years out of the workforce).

An interesting statistic I would like to see (but no one would ever produce) is the earning spread between women. I could be wrong but I suspect that there is a massive spread because women (like my mother) who received worthwhile degrees (pharmacy) and took little time off to raise their children (about 6 weeks for each of her 4 children, with a modified work schedule for essentially a year) end up earning far more than most men, while women who got worthless degrees (women’s studies) and took a long time off to raise children end up making far less than the average man.

Milton Hayek said...

I think you're on the verge of a Nobel here.

Anonymous said...

You and your maid outfits...

Charles said...

Hey, Maid outfits are great, leave the Cap'n alone.

The world would be a better place if women would dress up in maid outfits more often and I'm sure the Cap'n would agree.

Elizabeth said...

Bringing up the "pay gap" is the socialist's last resort in recruiting women to their side. It's just like their Norway tactics that always fall short of actually making a point. Ja, I've "probably" earned less, but I also know the reasons behind that fact and am okay with them as well. What bugs me the most is women socialists that regard Native American or African tribes as being "better", but somehow they fail to see the gender inequality at the root of those same tribes!

To qoute Nathaniel Branden:

"It is unfortunate today that many advocate's of women's rights mistakenly regard capitalism as their enemy. The historical truth is that it was capitalism that made it possible for a woman to earn an independent living. It was capitalism, with its underlying philosophy of individualism, that made the emergence of contemporary feminism historically inevitable."

Feckless said...

While it is true that men are the biggest earners, it is also true that women are the biggest spenders.

-> Women spend $4 trillion annually and account for 83% of U.S. consumer spending, which makes up two-thirds of the nation's gross national product, according to WomenCertified, a women's consumer advocacy and retail training organization headquartered in Hollywood, Fla., which also worked on the study ["Men buy, women shop" - Published: November 28, 2007] - http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article.cfm?articleid=1848

Also and this is something many people do not really know, women actually control more wealth than men (a tiny bit more)

-> a new survey of Federal Reserve Board data reveals that women actually control 51.3% of personal wealth in the United States. - http://www.pbs.org/ttc/headlines_economics_philanthropy.html