Where Women Work in the Mid-Valley and How Much They Earn

by Pat O'Connor

May 9, 2019

Women working in the Mid-Valley held more than 123,000 jobs in 2017. That comprised nearly half, 49.4 percent, of the total jobs in the Mid-Valley. Statewide, women held 48.6 percent of the total jobs in Oregon in 2017.
Women’s average monthly earnings in 2017 were $3,416 in the Mid-Valley, 74 percent of the $4,271 monthly earnings of men working in the Mid-Valley. Statewide, women in Oregon had monthly average earnings of $3,553 – 70 percent of the $5,102 average monthly earnings of men. The Mid-Valley’s average monthly earnings are less than the statewide average for both women and men.

The average monthly earnings data are useful, but the figures are not so useful in answering questions regarding gender wage inequality. Average monthly earnings do not take a number of other factors into account, such as the total hours a person worked and hourly wages. 

Women’s Employment by Industry

Women outnumbered men in 10 of the Mid-Valley’s 20 major industry sectors. Statewide, women outnumbered men in only seven of the 20 sectors. In the Mid-Valley’s health care and social assistance industry 75 percent of the jobs were held by women. Women also make up a large majority in the Mid-Valley’s finance and insurance industry where more than three out of five jobs are held by women and in the educational services industry where women hold 67 percent of the jobs. These are the same industries where women hold the majority of jobs statewide as well.
Retail trade is close to a 50-50 split between men and women in the Mid-Valley, similar to what is found statewide.     

At the other end of the spectrum, women held only 21 percent of the Mid-Valley’s construction jobs and 29 percent of the county’s manufacturing jobs. That trend is also similar statewide.
Women’s Average Earnings by Industry   

Average monthly earnings for women were lower than for men in every industry in the Mid-Valley and statewide.

In the Mid-Valley other services industry, the ratio of women’s to men’s earnings was 86 percent, the highest of all industries in the Mid-Valley. That being said, the average monthly earnings in the Mid-Valley’s other services sector are among the lowest of the Mid-Valley’s 20 major industries, both for women and men.

The industry reporting the highest average monthly earnings for women in the Mid-Valley was public administration, with average earnings of $5,149 a month. That is 64 percent higher than the $3,146 in average monthly earnings women earn across all industries in the Mid-Valley. Women working in the Mid-Valley’s public administration industry earn 69 percent of what men earn in the industry.       

Our website has a number of articles that address the topic of women in the workplace. Visit QualityInfo.org and search for “women” to see a list of available articles.

To explore and use data available from LED, visit lehd.ces.census.gov.

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