Rathbones pays its average female employee almost half (47.2%) what it does her average male colleague, putting it bottom on gender parity out of a peer group of private client businesses.
The 10 major discretionary firms which have reported so far have an average gender pay gap of 36%. That compares to a wider asset manager average of 31.4%, and a national average of 12.1%.
The company is doing slightly better that its immediate peers on the number of women it employs in the highest-paying roles, however. One in five of its top-earners is female, versus a peer average of 16.7%. Neither of those numbers came anywhere near the national average of 40.6%.
The numbers were reported under new gender auditing rules for businesses which employ more than 250 people in the UK.
Chief executive Philip Howell said: ‘I and my colleagues are committed to tackling the causes of our gender imbalance by working to attract and retain more senior women, to remove any potential unconscious bias in our behaviours, and actively create a culture of inclusion across the firm.’
Bonus payments displayed the second-widest gender disparity in the sector, with the 19.5% of male bonuses paid to women only better than 19.1% by Brown Shipley, and a City average of 35%
Part of the cause of the disparity is the high number of women in the lowest paying – potentially entry level – roles. Women make up 70% of employees in the lowest quartile versus a private client peer average of 58%, and 64% of the lower middle quartile, versus an average of 51%
The company said in a statement: ‘The situation is improving, but we also have low turnover in senior roles which means our ability to change our gender balance is slower than we might wish.
‘Similarly, our business model is built around long-term relationships with clients held for many years, which again means that change can be slow to happen. While the lack of gender diversity is an industrywide problem, we do recognise our own place in this trend.’