06/01/2012 10:23 am ET

Why Women's Pay Growth Slows At Age 30 And Peaks By 39

A new analysis by compensation research firm PayScale maps out exactly when college-educated women begin earning less than their male counterparts-and it's right from the beginning.

According to PayScale’s massive database of salary and demographic data from millions of full-time workers, female college graduates initially earn a median of $31,900 and male college graduates earn a median of $40,800, a difference of $8,900. From ages 22 to 30, men and women experience near identical wage growth in percentage terms. They generally see their salaries grow by 60% to $51,000 for women and $65,300 for men.

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