High Street Names Report Gender Pay and Bonus Gaps of up to 100%

A report by The Equality Trust finds that Rush Hair Ltd (69.2%), Yours Clothing Ltd (59% and bonus gap: 88%), HSBC Bank PLC, (55.1% and bonus gap: 68.5%) and Easyjet Airline Company Ltd (54.7%) boast some of the highest gender pay and bonus gaps. 

Other high street names that reported high gender pay gaps in 2019, chose not to report this year, such as Sweaty Betty  (63.9%), Virgin Atlantic Ltd (58.9%), Karen Millen Fashions Limited (53%) and Monsoon (50.8%).

To mark Equal Pay Month, in the year of the fiftieth anniversary of the passage of the Equal Pay Act, The Equality Trust is calling on the Government to reinstate the gender pay gap reporting regulations that were suspended due to the pandemic. The national charity is also launching a campaign for full pay transparency to help reduce gender and ethnicity pay gaps as well as other forms of pay discrimination and to deliver fair and equal pay in the workplace.

The report analyses gender pay and bonus gap reporting for all companies (those that reported in the first two years of the gender pay gap regulations and all that had reported by 23rd July) presenting a new three-year analysis of the trends from 2017. This reveals paltry progress on reducing the gender pay gap over the three years of company reporting and an increase of 179% on the average gender bonus gap of reporting companies. Since mandatory reporting was suspended for this year, these new findings show the urgent and ongoing need to reinstate the regulations.

Not only are the overall figures showing no improvement, the same names feature among the major offenders each year, suggesting that publishing the statistics is not enough, companies must draw up evidence-based action plans to address their failure.

The current reporting requirements fail to give any indication of whether or not companies can prove that women are paid equally for the same work or work of equal value – something that has been a legal requirement for decades. The extent to which unlawful unequal pay is driving the gender pay gap at any specific company is impossible to ascertain from the data currently available. We are calling for the addition of horizontal reporting by grade in order to make accessible the evidence of companies’ commitment (or lack thereof) to fair pay practices. We successfully brought a motion to Landsec’s AGM this year and they agreed to this groundbreaking move. 

The Equality Trust is also recommending that companies end the high risk practices identified by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (long salary range overlaps, not advertising salaries, etc.) which contribute to gender pay gaps and the likelihood of unequal pay practices.

Dr Wanda Wyporska, Executive Director of The Equality Trust, said:

“Fifty years after the Equal Pay Act, women are still being undervalued, underpaid and to add insult to injury, there is little if any progress on the gender pay and bonus gaps. And it’s disappointing to see how many of those companies selling predominantly to women, are keen to take women’s money, but not so eager to pay it to their women staff. We are calling on the Government to reinstate gender pay and bonus gap reporting and on companies to introduce full pay transparency.”

The report is available here.

The Equality Trust has also made available a data dashboard showing CEO pay ratios, gender pay and bonus gaps, unionisation and Living Wage commitments.  


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Notes to editors:

  1. The Equality Trust is the national registered charity that works to improve the quality of life in the UK by reducing social and economic inequalities. UK income inequality is among the highest in the developed world and evidence shows in countries with high levels of such inequality, we also see poorer mental and physical health, higher levels of imprisonment and violent crime, poorer educational outcomes and lower levels of trust. Inequality affects us all. 
  2. For case studies of 50 women speaking about equal pay, see our gallery here: http://50women.org.uk/
  3. To see how much women might lose over a working lifetime according to the gender pay gaps at their companies see our calculator here.
  4. Only 52% of companies voluntarily reported this year.
  5. All data were retrieved from the Government’s gender pay gap reporting portal on 23 July 2020.
  6. All gender pay and bonus gap figures used in this analysis refer to the mean difference in pay and bonuses between men and women.

Top Twenty High Street Names with High Gender Pay Gaps (reporting for 2019/20)

  1. Rush Hair Ltd: 69.2%
  2. Yours Clothing Ltd: 59% (+ bonus gap: 88%)
  3. Boux Avenue: 59%
  4. HSBC Bank PLC: 55.1% (+ bonus gap: 68.5%)
  5. J.P. Morgan Securities Ltd: 54.9%
  6. TUI Airways Ltd: 54.8%
  7. Easyjet Airline Company Ltd: 54.7%
  8. Rockstar North Ltd: 53.3% (video game company)
  9. Goldman Sachs International: 53.2%
  10. Mothercare PLC: 51.3% (+ bonus gap: 80.2%)
  11. Macquarie Bank Ltd: 49.4% (+ bonus gap: 67.2%)
  12. Citigroup Global Market Ltd: 47.8%
  13. Barclays Bank: 47.4% (+ bonus gap: 71.9%)
  14. Chanel Ltd: 46.8%
  15. Walgreens Boots Alliance Services Ltd: 45.5% (+ bonus gap: 83.1%)
  16. Panasonic UK: 41.3%
  17. Avon Cosmetics: 40.8% (+ bonus gap: 72.5%)
  18. Carnival PLC: 36.7% [owns P&O Cruises] (+ bonus gap: 81%)
  19. Sainsbury’s Bank PLC: 35.9%
  20. L’Oreal UK Ltd: 35.1%

Top Fifteen High Street Names with High Gender Bonus Gaps (reporting for 2019/20)

  1. Typhoo Tea Ltd: 100%
  2. Local councils (Chelmsford City Council, Craven District Council, Maidstone Borough Council, Staffordshire County Council): 100%
  3. National Portrait Gallery: 100%
  4. The National Gallery: 100%
  5. High Speed 2 (Hs2) Ltd: 100%
  6. Gymshark Ltd: 91%
  7. Center Parcs Limited: 87.5%
  8. BBC Studios Productions Limited: 86.4%
  9. SSE Energy Supply Limited: 86.2%
  10. Big Yellow Group PLC: 85%
  11. Hobbycraft Trading Limited: 80%
  12. Gocompare.com Ltd: 77.6%
  13. RightMove Group Limited: 76.9%
  14. AON UK Limited: 76.9%
  15. Asos.com Ltd: 71%

Companies with a high Gender Pay Gap (2018/19) that didn’t report this year

  1. Sweaty Betty: 63.9%
  2. Virgin Atlantic Ltd: 58.9%
  3. Phase Eight (Fashion & Designs) Limited: 56.1%
  4. Yell Limited: 54.6%
  5. Karen Millen Fashions Limited: 53%
  6. Monsoon Accessorize Limited: 50.8% (now known as M REALISATIONS 2020 LIMITED)
  7. Russell & Bromley Limited: 44.9%