Women in financial services

Women in financial services are often paid less than men for doing the same job. Bonus awards for men in the city are 80% higher than for women. There are very few women in senior positions, and the gap is proving slow to close.*

  • 50% of recruits to the sector are women but relatively few are at the top.
  • Financial services has one of the biggest gender pay gaps in the whole UK economy. Women working full time earn up to 55% less than their male colleagues, compared to a gender pay gap of 28% economy-wide.
  • Female full-time employees on average receive only a fifth of the annual incentive pay of men working full time in the sector.
  • Over-sexualising of women with career aspirations is common.

Common problems faced by women in the city are:

  • Pregnancy and maternity discrimination: women lose out on pay rises, promotion, bonuses and sometimes their job because of being pregnant or on maternity leave.
  • Unequal pay, especially bonuses: the lack of transparency means that employers can get away with paying women lower pay and bonuses for doing equal work.
  • Unfair and gender based distribution of work: women are sometimes passed over for new or high profile work in favour of men.
  • Harassment: it still goes on, whether by undermining women, sexist jokes, unwanted sexual advances, or client socials to lap dancing venues.
  • Long hours culture and lack of flexible working: there is little flexibility of hours to enable employees to combine work and family.

*Statistics from the Equalities and Human Rights Commission Finance Sector Inquiry published on 7 September 2009 here