Special Report

Best (and Worst) Paying Cities for Women

Fresno, California night
Source: Wikimedia Commons

5. Fresno, CA
> Women’s pay as a pct. of men’s: 87.8%
> Median earnings for men: $40,626
> Median earnings for women: $35,674

Most high-paying industries either employ significantly more men than women or tend to pay men more. While this is the case in Fresno, California as well, gaps tend to be smaller in some key high-paying industries. Women make up 22% of Fresno’s architecture and engineering positions, which, while nowhere near equal representation, is the second highest female representation in the field of any major metro area. The typical female engineer or architect in the area is actually paid more than the typical male, with a median wage of $86,899 a year versus $73,921.

Downtown LA night Los Angeles sunset skyline California
Source: Thinkstock

4. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA
> Women’s pay as a pct. of men’s: 89.9%
> Median earnings for men: $45,733
> Median earnings for women: $41,127

Women earn about 90 cents for every dollar men earn in Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, about 10 cents less on the dollar than the national pay gap. The typical woman working as a life, physical, or social scientist in Los Angeles earns as much as her male counterpart and more than women scientists nationwide. Women also earn as much as men in several low-paying positions in the metro area, such as community and social service occupations and office and administrative support jobs.

In recent years, celebrities have directed media attention to the gender pay gap among Hollywood actors. Women in the arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media occupations in Los Angeles earn 78% of what men in similar positions do, less than the 86% national gap.

Daytona Beach, Florida
Source: Thinkstock

3. Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach, FL
> Women’s pay as a pct. of men’s: 90.2%
> Median earnings for men: $35,989
> Median earnings for women: $32,458

Women working in Deltona, Florida earn more than 90 cents on the dollar compared to their male counterparts. However, depending on the type of occupation, there is still a sizeable gap between genders. In computer and mathematical occupations, women account for less than one-third of the workforce, and while the typical Deltona male employed in these industries earns more than $70,000 a year, women earn a median of just $38,750. As is the case in a number of metro areas, it is likely the pay gap in Deltona is less severe because women are less likely to be employed in some low-paying industries. While 54.3% of all food preparation and serving jobs are held by women nationwide, only 44.3% of deltona’s food service jobs are held by females, lower than in nearly every major metropolitan area.

Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Orange County
Source: Thinkstock

2. Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
> Women’s pay as a pct. of men’s: 91.7%
> Median earnings for men: $45,732
> Median earnings for women: $41,938

The typical woman in Durham-Chapel Hill earns $41,938 a year, roughly 92% of the $45,732 the typical man earns, one of the smallest gender pay gaps nationwide. Durham-Chapel Hill is home to the Research Triangle Park, the largest corporate research complex in the country. The more than 200 companies in the park may help increase access for women to high-paying technology jobs. Women comprise 19.7% of all architects and engineers in the metro area and earn roughly $7,000 more than their male counterparts, each some of the highest figures nationwide.

Cape Coral, Florida
Source: Thinkstock

1. Cape Coral-Fort Myers, FL
> Women’s pay as a pct. of men’s: 93.6%
> Median earnings for men: $37,402
> Median earnings for women: $35,023

While the gender pay gap exists in every major metropolitan area, is it the least severe in Cape Coral, Florida. Women earn 93.6 cents for every dollar men earn, and in some area industries, women are paid as well or better than their male counterparts. The typical woman employed in the business and financial services sector in Cape Coral earns $51,296 a year, more than the $51,303 a typical man earns. While on a national level female health technologists and technicians earn just 82% of the median male earnings, the typical Cape Coral woman in the profession earns $5,100 more than the typical male earnings in the position.