Stay-at-home moms worth $117k per year?

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There's nothing like a feel-good story that's based on the most manipulated of statistics.

Salary.com says stay-at home moms would earn $117k per year if they were compensated for everything they bring to the table. The survey calculated Mom's market value by studying pay levels for 10 jobs titles including Child Day Care Worker, Teacher, Taxi Driver, Facilities Manager, Short-order Cook, Laundry Attendant, Janitor, Counselor, CEO, Administrative Assistant, Accounting Clerk, Licensed Practical Nurse, Plumber, Automotive Mechanic, and Cake Decorator. The biggest driver of stay-at-home mom theoretical earnings is overtime pay, since many stay at home moms report working more than 90 hours per week.

Here's the thing: It's garbage. If the theoretical value of a stay-at-home mom were really $117k, far fewer women would have to work at jobs that pay far less than that. And nannies would earn six-figure incomes instead of the sub-$25k rate they normally earn.

It's not that stay-at-home moms aren't awesome and extremely valuable. It's that they're too valuable to be exploited by cynical marketing experts looking to drum up press for Salary.com. Check out the video below for an example of the attention this "study" is getting.

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