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Pay gap between male and female accountants remains but is narrowing

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The pay gap between male and female chartered accountants under 30 has narrowed in 2013, with females earning £48,500 compared to their male counterparts, whose average basic salary is £50,200.

The annual, Stott and May/ICAEW Chartered Accountants Salary Survey, of 6,000 accountants, published today, reveals the encouraging gender equality trend in its latest survey.

The survey revealed that the average basic salary for a chartered accountant has remained static at £92,600 compared to £92,100 in 2012, while the average bonus is £21,300. The report stated that these figures are inflated by a small number of high earners - the median salary, which reflects the majority of earnings is £79,300 (while the median bonus is £3,500).

Those in the top positions (chairman, chief executive, managing director and chief operating officers) continue to be the highest earners with average earnings of £145,100.

The report also revealed the geographic divide in basic salaries for chartered accountants remains: London's professionals earn more (£103,900) than their counterparts anywhere else in the UK (£84,900).

Across different business sectors, the average basic salary for those in financial services, insurance, healthcare and pharmaceutical, as well as energy, water, mining and utilities has gone down since 2012, the survey found.

Nina Carpanini, head of finance practice at Stott and May, said: "The role of a finance function within a business has changed dramatically over the last few years, from a traditional back-office function to an integral part of the business; individuals with the right business partnering, commercial and communication skills are now in high demand.

"Without a strong commercial finance function in tough economic times, a business cannot grow and move forward. Accountants are no longer simply number crunchers and this increase in salary reflects this."