House of Commons Library briefing paper: The Gender Pay Gap

The gender pay gap varies markedly by age. The gap is small or negative for employees in their 20s or 30s. For older age groups, the gap widens considerably.

This is according to the April 2018 report from the House of Commons Library on the gender pay gap.

This briefing paper provides statistics on the size of the gender pay gap in the UK, looks at some of the reasons why the gender pay gap arises and discusses the duty on large employers to report on the size of the gender pay gap in their workforce.

The paper finds:

  • The gender pay gap for all employees was 18.4% at April 2017. Somewhat confusingly, the overall gap is higher than the gender pay gap for full-time employees (9.1%) as well as that for part-time employees (-5.1%)
  • The gender pay gap for full-time employees has been gradually decreasing since 1997. Over the same period the part-time gender pay gap has stayed very small or negative
  • The gap between male and female hourly earnings grows gradually but steadily in the years after parents have their first child
  • The gap is very large for skilled trades occupations and process, plant and machine operatives where men comprise a very large majority of full-time employees
  • The gender pay gap for full-time employees was negative in Northern Ireland in April 2017, at -3.4%. It was positive in all other regions and countries of the UK, ranging from 6.3% in Wales to 14.6% in London.

Read the full research briefing online.