An analysis conducted by the New York Times of internal payment data on cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase revealed differences in salaries, which found their wives and black employees were underpaid.

Coinbase Underpaid Women and Black Workers, NYT Study Claims

According to the report, female employees were paid by Coinbase on average $ 13,000, or 8%, which is less than male employees with similar positions within the crypto exchange. The data collected by the NYT includes salary data for 830 employees at the end of 2018.

As for an alleged unfair treatment of black workers in terms of compensation, the figures showed that 16 salaried workers got $ 11,500, or 7%, less than all other workers in comparable jobs, the New York Times article said.

The analysis, conducted by Alexandra Marr, an economist specializing in statistical analysis of pay bias lawsuits, revealed that the gap between white and black workers grew to 11%.

The NYT claimed they confirmed the accuracy of the study with nine employees included in the data collected, “and colleagues they knew.”

As for the magnitude of the salary differentials in Coinbase, the NYT article said:

The pay gaps at Coinbase appear to be much wider than those in the tech industry as a whole, and at the few other tech companies that have had to release data.

Coinbase’s response to the NYT article

Right after the New York Times published the study, a US-based crypto exchange issued a statement signed by LJ Brock, Coinbase’s Chief People Officer, indicating the company’s “commitment to fair and equitable compensation for every employee.” In fact, the statement is an internal email that Coinbase sent to their employees on December 29, 2020.

One of the excerpts of the statement reads:

Coinbase is committed to ruthlessly eliminating bias in all of our internal processes. We also recognize that it is best practice to monitor our work regularly, and while reward ability is critical at every stage of maturation, we believe we have implemented the framework to ensure that we achieve equitable results. We recently hired a woman-owned certified law firm to partner with an expert software solution, Syndio, to verify our global payroll data. We will look at our reward through the lens of ethnicity / race, in addition to gender.

There are also Coinbase supporters in the controversy, such as Balaji S. Srinivasan, an angel investor, entrepreneur and former Coinbase CTO, who said that “no one” can rely on the data analysis published by the article’s author, NYT tech reporter Nathaniel Popper, who claims that most of the executives at the crypto exchange are “women and people of color.”

However, this isn’t the first time Coinbase has come under similar controversy. In fact also the NYT published a report on Nov. 27, 2020, which found Coinbase is dealing with “many internal complaints of discriminatory treatment” among black workers.

What’s your take on the Coinbase’s controversy over the alleged differences in salaries? Let us know in the comments below.

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