Income gaps in couples - Three women out of four earn less than their partner

Thomas Morin, division Études sociales, Insee

In 2011, three women out of four of working age and in a relationship earned less than their partner, when earned income (wages, income of the self-employed) and alternative income (unemployment benefits and pensions) are taken into account. On average women contribute 36% of the couple's income. They earn a lower salary, on average, than their partner, often work part-time, and have a lower labour force participation rate. From 2002 to 2011, the average contribution by women increased by three points, mainly due to the decline in the proportion of housewives. Income gaps in couples are more pronounced when the partners have children and when they are married; the gaps are narrower when the couples are younger and better educated.

Insee Première
No 1492
Paru le : 06/03/2014