Money Still No Enough???

Wages too low? Money still no enough?? Median salaries (including CPF contribution) of Singapore workers have been raising steadily. It now stands at $4,437, up from $4,232 a year ago. Looks like we are not too bad lah.

Not as bad as what my neighbour Ben likes to moan about every time when we meet in the lift. Yes, everything increase, our salary also go up mah. Actually, not just median income went up. Median gross monthly income after taking into account of inflation, also went up by 3.5% a year from 2013 – 2018, compared to only 1.9% a year from 2008 – 2012. So we can be thankful that the increases in the last 5 years is better than the previous 5 years.

On top of that, those people in the bottom (20th percentile), saw an even bigger increase per year in the last 5 years 4.2%, compared to the average of 3.5%. I’m heartened that initiatives like the Wage Credit Scheme (WCS) and curbs on hiring foreign workers are taking effect.

Looking ahead, Singapore workers should expect a 2.6% salary increase in 2019. This is according to a Salary Trends Survey by ECA International. They arrived at this figured after factoring for inflation. According to them, the increase is actually lesser than 2018, which is 2.9%. Although the salary increase for Singapore workers is ahead of Hong Kong and Japan workers, it is actually lagging slightly behind the Asia Pacific average of 2.7%.

As for employment rates, we also did not do too badly. The unemployment rates for Singapore workers in the most watched group, PMETs and non-PMETs, dipped slightly to 2.9% as of June 2018, compared with 3% in June 2017. That is certainly encouraging and the employment rate for Singapore workers in the age bracket of 15 – 24 rose to 34.5% in 2018, which is also higher that 2017’s 34.1%. At the upper spectrum of 65 years and above, employment rate is now at 26.8% compared to 25.8% in 2017. This is mainly due to MOM’s efforts to encourage workers to stay on beyond their retirement years.

Frankly speaking, I would rather remain employed after 65 years old, even if it is on a part time basis. It certainly beats sitting around doing nothing. It might be exciting at first to have totally nothing to do after all these years of slogging. But touch your heart if you do nothing for an extended time, won’t you feel bored? There’s only so much kopi you can drink, so much line dancing or karaoke you can take part in. At the end of the day, if you are working, your self worth is higher and you would also be contributing to society.

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Chuan-Jin Chen



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I am now Speaker of Parliament of Sureboh Singapore. I will speak a lot and write a lot of friendly-friendly stories about Singapore. I love to run around Singapore and meet old cardboard ladies. When you see me, you must bow to me please.