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Opinion | Discipleship

Young, Single Women Outearn Male Counterparts

Does this signal a bridge in the perennial gender pay gap?

The fact that men make more money than women isn't exactly news. Sure, it pops up in the media from time to time as some ask what we need to do to help that statistic change, while others insist that the gap isn't real to begin with. For the most part, though, it's a fact that's accepted as part of our culture: one of the many inequalities—real or imagined, positive or negative—that exist between the genders.

But when a study comes out saying that some women actually earn more than their male counterparts—as one such study did earlier this month—well, that gets people talking.

According to The Wall Street Journal, data for 2008 indicates that "single, childless women between ages 22 and 30 were earning more than their male counterparts in most U.S. cities, with incomes that were 8% greater on average." Alas, I'm not expecting to see any corresponding jump in my own income, as I'm neither single, childless, nor under age 30, but at first glance, I'm glad to see that working women, at least of the young, unmarried variety, are making strides in closing the wage gap.

Not so fast, though, says Joanne Cleaver of BNET. As with any statistic, perhaps especially a statistic involving money, the claim is only as good as the multifaceted factors behind it. Cleaver contacted James Chung of Reach Advisors—the firm that published the statistic—and sums up what he had to say: "It's pretty simple: more women are graduating from college than men, so more young ...

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