Salaries in Private Sector Increased 4.2% in 2018, With 81% of Workers Getting Increment

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A wise old man once told me this: “In Singapore, everything also increase except our pay.”

That wise old man turned out to be wrong, because the latest figures from MOM show that 81% of us in the private sector have pay raise in 2018, and the salaries for us increase by 4.2%.

Numbers don’t lie, but the wise old man does.

Private Sector’s Increase

Lest you’re so young that you didn’t know the difference between private and public sector, here’s a crash course:

Private sector is any industry that’s not in the Government, while public sector is essentially working for the Government.

For example, Goody Feed is in the private sector since we’re not the Government and is a company, while an organization like LTA is considered public sector.

So, whatever you’d be reading here is all about the private sector.

MOM’s Manpower Research and Statistics Department just came out with a report on our wages and it’s rather encouraging: in the private sector, total wages increase by 4.2% in 2018, compared to an increase of just 3.2% in 2017.

These are “real values”, which mean they’ve been adjusted for inflation. In other words, the increases aren’t to fight inflation but are true value.

If we don’t factor in inflation, that would be an increase of 4.6%.

Image: MOM

The numbers were derived from 5,300 companies, which in total employed 1.2 million people. Suffice to say, this high number means they’re more accurate than your NS buddy’s shooting skills.

As seen from the graphic, the finance and insurance industry saw the largest growth at 6.3%. So if you’ve any friends working in a bank or insurance company, you can bet that they’ve a heavier wallet.

81% See Pay Raise

In 2017, only 78% of workers in Singapore saw a pay increase.

In 2018, that grew to 81%. That means out of ten friends, at least eight of them received a pay raise.

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However, only 67% of companies gave a pay raise to their employees.

And just so you know, it’s not all roses for everyone: 8% of employees see a pay cut of an average of 4.3%.

That means only 11% of employees didn’t see any increase or cut in their salary, but if you factor in inflation, they do take a “pay cut” since every single dollar is decreasing in value every year.

You can read the comprehensive report here, and since you’re here, you might as well watch a video we’ve done about salaries in Singapore:

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