Similarly to many other advanced economies, Israel’s hourly gender wage gap of 14 percent is stark (though slightly below the OECD average).
The exceptions, however, are among Israel’s Arabs and ultra-Orthodox.
The reason, according to data from A Picture of the Nation, a study the Taub Center for Social Policy Studies in Israel released last week, is that both men and women in these groups are mired in the lower echelons of the economy, if they are working at all.
“The unique situation among haredim and the relatively small male-female wage gap in the Arab-Israeli sector are the result of differences in the level of education and labor force participation of these populations,” the study found.
Among ultra-Orthodox, women actually earn more than men, because women are much more likely to work and to advance careers. Among Arabs, far fewer women work, although the vast majority of those who are educated do so.
The combination of less education and limited employment is linked to lower wages.