British children's weekly pocket money has fallen to a seven-year low, in a sign parents are still cutting back on non-essential spending even as the country emerges from recession, a survey showed. Halifax, part of Lloyds Banking Group, said average pocket money fell to 5.89 pounds a week in 2010 from 6.24 pounds in 2009. Children's pocket money has fallen despite a small rise in their parents' wages over the past year. Average weekly pay in Britain in the three months to July was 431 pounds excluding bonuses, 1.8 percent more than a year earlier.Parents paid daughters less pocket money than sons, in a parallel to the gender gap in the earnings of grownups. Halifax based its data on a survey of 1,204 children aged between 8 and 15 conducted from August 26 to September 2. Image Credit: Rex Features

London: Does the gender pay gap start in the home? According to a website that lets parents set up online accounts to pay their pocket money, boys are getting 15 per cent more than girls for doing the same chores.

The site looked at 3,800 jobs which parents had registered to pay for via the site, and found that while boys earned an average of 1.46 a chore, girls were given just 1.25.

The biggest disparity was for laying the table, where boys were being bribed to the tune of 1.59, while girls were getting just 51p. Homework also seemed to attract very different “wages”, with boys getting 2.30 to complete a homework task, whereas girls received just 1.08.

Across the board, the most lucrative chore was help with cooking, which earned children more than 2. Payment from more than 1,000 parents using the site peaked when a child was 16, and could earn an average of 4.13 for each job done, compared with 87p among nine-year-olds.

It’s not just in the UK that boys seem to be getting better paid for helping around the home. A survey in Australia, found that boys spent 2.1 hours a week on chores to earn an average of A$48, while girls spent 2.7 hours on household jobs but earned A$45.

And even when headline figures for pocket money are taken into account, rather than payment for tasks, boys earn more. In September 2012, Halifax found that girls were getting 32p a week less than boys.

What isn’t clear is why there is a divide. Do boys drive a harder bargain, as some suggest they do in the workplace? Do parents think boys need more incentive to do the same jobs? Tell us what happens in your household and why.