GOBankingRates

States With the Biggest (and Smallest) Gender Pay Gap

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AscentXmedia / Getty Images/iStockphoto

On Aug. 26, 1920, women were granted the right to vote with the certification of the 19th Amendment. But although women and men’s voices count equally when it comes to voting, there’s still inequality between the genders in other arenas, including the workplace. On average, women earn 82 cents for every $1 men make, and the median women’s earnings are 72% of the median men’s earnings in the U.S.

However, in some states, there is an even larger pay gap between men and women — and fortunately, in some states, the gap is smaller. GOBankingRates analyzed data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2018 American Community Survey to identify the median earnings for men and women in each state and used that data to find women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s. States were then ranked based on this percentage, with a higher percentage representing a smaller pay gap.

In honor of Women’s Equality Day on Aug. 26, take a look at where women are earning the most — and least — compared to men.

Last updated: Aug. 11, 2020

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States With the Biggest Gender Pay Gap

In these 15 states, women earn as little as 57.1% of what men do, and the difference between what the median man earns and what the median woman earns is as high as $20,000. See which states have the biggest gender pay gaps.

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15. Washington

  • Median earnings for men: $51,678
  • Median earnings for women: $35,768
  • Difference: $15,910
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 69.2%

 

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14. Montana

  • Median earnings for men: $39,676
  • Median earnings for women: $27,403
  • Difference: $12,273
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 69.1%
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13. Pennsylvania

  • Median earnings for men: $46,301
  • Median earnings for women: $31,945
  • Difference: $14,356
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 69.0%

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12. Illinois

  • Median earnings for men: $47,711
  • Median earnings for women: $32,914
  • Difference: $14,797
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 69.0%
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11. Iowa

  • Median earnings for men: $44,968
  • Median earnings for women: $30,725
  • Difference: $14,243
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 68.3%
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10. Rhode Island

  • Median earnings for men: $50,015
  • Median earnings for women: $33,767
  • Difference: $16,248
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 67.5%

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9. Oklahoma

  • Median earnings for men: $40,482
  • Median earnings for women: $27,328
  • Difference: $13,154
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 67.5%

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8. New Hampshire

  • Median earnings for men: $51,102
  • Median earnings for women: $34,112
  • Difference: $16,990
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 66.8%
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7. Alabama

  • Median earnings for men: $41,210
  • Median earnings for women: $27,263
  • Difference: $13,947
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 66.2%
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6. West Virginia

  • Median earnings for men: $39,878
  • Median earnings for women: $25,860
  • Difference: $14,018
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 64.8%
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5. Idaho

  • Median earnings for men: $40,484
  • Median earnings for women: $26,227
  • Difference: $14,257
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 64.8%
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4. North Dakota

  • Median earnings for men: $50,190
  • Median earnings for women: $32,305
  • Difference: $17,885
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 64.4%

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3. Louisiana

  • Median earnings for men: $43,605
  • Median earnings for women: $26,943
  • Difference: $16,662
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 61.8%

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2. Wyoming

  • Median earnings for men: $47,377
  • Median earnings for women: $27,361
  • Difference: $20,016
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 57.8%
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1. Utah

  • Median earnings for men: $45,834
  • Median earnings for women: $26,194
  • Difference: $19,640
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 57.1%
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States With the Smallest Gender Pay Gap

In these states, there is a smaller gender wage gap — but a significant gap still exists in all 15 states. At absolute best, women make nearly $7,000 less than their male counterparts. In most of the states on this list, however, the gap is closer to $10,000.

Reality: What You Actually Take Home From a $200,000 Salary in Every State

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15. Tennessee

  • Median earnings for men: $40,165
  • Median earnings for women: $29,804
  • Difference: $10,361
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 74.2%
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14. California

  • Median earnings for men: $45,557
  • Median earnings for women: $33,912
  • Difference: $11,645
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 74.4%
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13. Oregon

  • Median earnings for men: $42,252
  • Median earnings for women: $31,578
  • Difference: $10,674
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 74.7%

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12. New York

  • Median earnings for men: $49,888
  • Median earnings for women: $37,695
  • Difference: $12,193
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 75.6%
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11. North Carolina

  • Median earnings for men: $40,358
  • Median earnings for women: $30,609
  • Difference: $9,749
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 75.8%

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10. Arkansas

  • Median earnings for men: $36,974
  • Median earnings for women: $28,174
  • Difference: $8,800
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 76.2%
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9. Delaware

  • Median earnings for men: $42,447
  • Median earnings for women: $32,722
  • Difference: $9,725
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 77.1%
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8. Maine

  • Median earnings for men: $40,818
  • Median earnings for women: $31,544
  • Difference: $9,274
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 77.3%

 

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7. Vermont

  • Median earnings for men: $41,524
  • Median earnings for women: $32,150
  • Difference: $9,374
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 77.4%
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6. Arizona

  • Median earnings for men: $40,391
  • Median earnings for women: $31,387
  • Difference: $9,004
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 77.7%
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5. Hawaii

  • Median earnings for men: $44,669
  • Median earnings for women: $34,899
  • Difference: $9,770
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 78.1%
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4. Nevada

  • Median earnings for men: $40,434
  • Median earnings for women: $31,930
  • Difference: $8,504
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 79.0%
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3. Maryland

  • Median earnings for men: $52,252
  • Median earnings for women: $41,291
  • Difference: $10,961
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 79.0%
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2. Florida

  • Median earnings for men: $37,003
  • Median earnings for women: $30,060
  • Difference: $6,943
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 81.2%
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1. District of Columbia

  • Median earnings for men: $71,190
  • Median earnings for women: $60,562
  • Difference: $10,628
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s: 85.1%

More From GOBankingRates

Methodology: GOBankingRates analyzed data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2018 American Community Survey to identify the states with the biggest and smallest gender pay gap. GOBankingRates first identified (1) the overall median earnings for the employed population over 16 in each state and D.C., and then found (2) the median earnings for men and (3) women. GOBankingRates was then able to calculate (4) the difference in men and women’s median earnings in each state and represent (5) women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s. States were then ranked on factor (5) with the state with the smallest gender pay gap at No. 1. All data was collected on and up to date as of Aug. 3, 2020.