Women and mens salaries 1998-2002

Equal development of women and men's salaries


According to salary statistics, the development of salaries has been almost the same for women and men for the period 1998-2002. Women's salaries were 83.6 per cent of men's salaries in 1998, whilst the figure in 2002 was almost the same at 83.9 per cent.

The statistics comprise a selection of around 1.2 million employees for each year in the period 1998-2002, and cover both full-time and part-time workers. By converting part-time employees pro rata salaries to a full-time salary, we can compare the salary development of all employees and of the full-time and part-time employees. In 1998, the average monthly pay was NOK 23 200 for men and NOK 19 400 for women. By 2002 these figures had increased to NOK 28 300 and NOK 23 700 respectively.

With regard to the full-time employees, womens salaries have developed more than mens salaries, with the percentage of womens salaries standing at 85.3 per cent of the mens salaries in 1998, rising to 86 per cent in 2002. The percentage of womens salaries among part-time employees remained stable at approximately 95 per cent of the mens salaries between 1998 and 2002.

Development of women's and men's salaries

Differences between industries

There are significant differences between the different industries in the private sector with regard to both full-time and part-time employees. In manufacturing, where there is clear dominance of men and relatively few part-time employees, the percentage of womens salaries compared to mens salaries rose from 86.3 per cent in 1998 to 87.5 per cent in 2002. Compared to employees in the wholesale and retail trade, which has a large proportion of part-time female employees, womens pay amounted to just 77.7 per cent in 1998 and 79.7 per cent in 2002.

Public sector activities

Municipal and county authority activities are characterised by a large proportion of women and a high number of part-time workers. In 1998, the percentage of womens salaries compared to mens salaries in this area stood at 87.2 per cent, whilst in 2002 this increased to 87.6 per cent. The education sector is also made up of a high proportion of women, and the development of pay in this area was better for women than men in the period 1998-2002. Whilst womens salaries in 1998 came to 93.3 per cent of the mens salaries, the proportion had increased to 94.8 per cent in 2002. State employees have not experienced the same development of salaries; womens pay as a percentage of mens pay has seen a slight fall from 88.6 per cent in 1998 to 88.2 per cent in 2002.

Women's salaries as a percentage of men's, by education

Women's salaries as a percentage of men's, by industry

Education groups

Among the different education groups, women have the best result relative to men in the groups with lower education. The womens salaries as a percentage of the mens salaries have been relatively stable at around 85 per cent throughout the period with regard to the group with upper secondary education and the group with compulsory education. However, if we consider groups with higher education, it emerges that even for those with a 4-year higher education the percentage has remained stable at around 80 per cent. For those with the longest education, more than four years at university or university college, the proportion falls from 82.7 per cent in 1998 to 81.7 per cent in 2002.

Basis for statistics

The statistics are based on information on a selection of activities from 1998 to 2002. In 2002, the statistics comprised a total of 855 928 full-time and 426 563 part-time employees in all the main industries including the public sector, with the exception of the primary industries. According to provisional figures from the quarterly national accounts, there are approximately 2 099 800 employees in the population that are covered by the statistics as at the third quarter of 2002.

Monthly earnings comprise paid agreed salary, irregular supplements and bonuses, commission etc. Overtime payments are not included in monthly earnings.

See also Todays statistics : " Salary statistics. All employees, 1997-2002. Provisional figures ".

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