The paper utilises the Juhn Murphy and Pierce (1991) decomposition to shed light on the pattern of slow male-female wage convergance in Australia over the 1980s. The analysis allows one to distinguish between the role of wage structure and gender-specific effects. The central question addressed is whether rising wage inequality counteracted the forces of increased female investment in labour market skills, i.e. education and experience. The conclusion is that in contrast to the US and the UK, Australian women do not appear to have been swimming against a tide of adverse wage structure changes.