The biggest gender wage gap was found to exist in the United States, where women's wages are on average 35.8 percent lower than men's. In contrast, Sweden proved to be the most equal employer, with a difference between the sexes of about four percent, as per the figures provided in the Global Wage Report 2014/15.
The existing wage gaps can be classified by "explained" and "unexplained" factors. The "explained" part covers an individual's experience, education, occupational category, economic activity, location and work ethic, whereas the "unexplained" part, also known as a wage penalty, includes wage discrimination and characteristics that should in principle have no effect on wages.
Underpinning how discrimination is keeping women down around the world, the ILO report shows that if the wage penalty were eliminated, nearly half the countries studied would see women actually earn more than men.
The ILO's Global Wage Report is published every two years, reviewing core tendencies in wages distribution and policy responses in developed, emerging and developing countries.