The overwhelming majority of Spain’s highest earners are male, according to new 2014 data released by the Finance Ministry.
Although men only represent 54 percent of all salary earners, they take up 82 percent of positions with earnings more than 10 times the minimum wage.
The figures are based on tax filings by companies that withheld taxes from 16,899,024 workers across Spain. Of these, 9.15 million were men and 7.74 million were women.
Elite foreign athletes appear to be the workers making top dollar in Spain
Even though they are a smaller group, women are the majority on the lower rungs of the salary scale.
Among the highest earners, there were 22,792 women compared with 104,914 men. Also in that group, men made an average €152,174 a year whereas women made €133,404.
The figures released by the Finance Ministry in its report Mercado de trabajo y pensiones en las fuentes tributarias (or, Job market and pensions in tax sources) show a gender gap of more than €4,600 in the average salary.
While large, this difference has dropped from the more than €5,000 reported in 2012, according to the same sources.
However, it bears noting that these statistics include earnings by part-time and temporary workers, many of whom tend to be women.
Foreigners earn less
The gap is even bigger when nationality is taken into account. Whereas Spanish workers made an average salary of €19,294 last year, foreigners earned €10,070. Of the 16.9 million individuals working for companies in Spain, 1.6 million of them were foreign-born, the figures show.
But when only the top earners are taken into account, foreigners made even more on average than Spaniards, topping the chart at €177,873. This is probably due to a reduced group of individuals who earn exceptionally high salaries, bringing the average up. Elite foreign athletes appear to be the workers making top dollar in Spain.
The report considers anyone who worked for a company in 2014, regardless of the duration of their employment. The statistics thus include students who worked for just a few weeks, and retirees who do occasional part-time work. This kind of input has an effect on global averages.
English version by Susana Urra.