It has been claimed women are making the most of their finances during the recession, but are still underpaid compared to men.

Ruth Whitehead, director of independent financial advisers Ruth Whitehead Associates, made the assertion in response to new research from Halifax that revealed women save more in proportion to their earnings than male colleagues.

The financial adviser said the study does not underline the “most crucial” statistic that men and women save approximately the same amounts – £7,507 for women compared to £7,790 for men.

However, because women earn less, their savings represent a higher proportion of their income.

“After all these years of struggle for equal pay, there is so little to show for it. And I’m saddened by having to write that in 2009.”

The Halifax study found female savers have average balances equivalent to around 40 per cent of their average annual gross earnings, while men have an average balance of 23 per cent.