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Could millennial women be the start of the end of the gender wage gap?

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Millennial women as a result of the different difficulties faced during the economic recession could be the generation that redefines the employment gender gap in the United States. Challenges and difficulties seem to shape millennials into defining and reinventing several social aspects, it seems employment is one of them. Considering the difficulties millennials had to face, seems to be restructuring the gender gap in employment for this generation. Opening the possibility for this generation to start redefining the gender gap in the United States.

Millennials are restructuring many aspects of workforce. Not only are they challenging the companies about hierarchy, relationships, and the average retention rates, they have been facing some particular challenges related to their employment and earnings. This challenges have been shaping their behavior and attitudes towards working and money.   

The millennial generation has come of age in difficult economic times, a particular period where student debt reached all-time highs. Where simultaneously employment opportunities were limited. Research indicates that in 2013, the average loan debt among bachelor’s degree students graduating with debt from public and private nonprofit colleges was $28,400.

Despite facing difficult economic times, millennial women, defined as those aged 19–37 in 2016 studied many different career paths and looked for varied jobs. Much like their older counterparts, however, they are confronting a range of additional challenges in the workforce.

Nearly seven out of ten (67.8 percent) millennial women are active in the workforce, compared with 73.1 percent of their male counterparts.

It is evident that Millennial women and men have been highly vulnerable to unemployment: 11.6 percent of millennial women and 12.5 percent of millennial men were unemployed in 2013, which is well above the unemployment rates for women and men overall.

Millennial women face a gender wage gap, although one that is narrower than the wage gap between all women and men. In 2013, the median annual earnings for millennial women working full-time, year-round were $30,000, compared with $35,000 for their male counterparts, resulting in an earnings ratio of 85.7 percent. Between 2011 and 2013, millennial women earned less than millennial men in all but one state, New York, where women of this age range earned $38,319 compared with $37,542 for men. For both millennial women and all women, New York is the best state for the gender wage gap, and the District of Columbia has the highest earnings.

A change in their occupations

More than one in three (34.2 percent) millennial women work in managerial or professional occupations, compared with one in four (25.4 percent) millennial men.

Millennial women (10.2 percent) are slightly more likely than millennial men (9.7 percent) to work in management, business, and financial operations.

Millennial women are also considerably more likely than their male counterparts to work in professional or related occupations, 24.0 percent compared with 15.7 percent. As with older women, millennial women are much more likely than their male counterparts to work in service occupations, 27.2 percent compared with 20.5 percent, and much less likely to work in construction or production occupations, 5.4 percent of employed millennial women compared with 32.9 percent of employed millennial men.

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