Are you earning more money than peers in your age group? Are you making more money than 50% of the workforce in Singapore? Find out as we shed light on all things median salary-related.
Median salary is not the same as average salary. While both are indicators that you should totally care about as a responsible individual who puts food on the table and pays the bills, the median salary shows you how much people are making at that midway point (i.e. 50th percentile).
It gives you a glimpse into your own standing relative to others in the workforce and can be very useful when you’re negotiating your salary or thinking of taking your career elsewhere.
If your income is higher than the median income, good on you! You’re making more money than 50% of the workforce. The reverse is true, too, though don’t be too hard on yourself if you find yourself on the less desirable side of the distribution.
- Median salary in Singapore
- Average salary in Singapore
- Median salary in Singapore by age
- Median salary in Singapore by gender
- Median salary in Singapore by education level
- Median salary trend in Singapore
- Median salary in other comparable countries
What’s the median salary in Singapore?
According to the latest available data, the median monthly salary from full-time work in Singapore is S$4,534 in 2020, including CPF contributions from employers.
Compared to 2010’s median monthly salary from full-time work, this represents a cumulative increase of about 51%. Over the 10-year period, the median monthly salary from full-time work gradually rose from S$3,000 to what it is today.
It’s also interesting to note that the nominal and real annualised change in median gross monthly income from the year 2010 to 2020 is 4.2% p.a. and 2.8% p.a. respectively.
Without accounting for CPF contributions from employees, the median monthly salary from full-time work in Singapore in 2020 and 2010 is S$4,000 and S$2,708 respectively.
What’s the average salary in Singapore?
As of the second quarter of 2021, the average salary in Singapore stands at S$5,474 per month, including CPF contributions from employers.
Median salary in Singapore by age
It is fair that as we grow in age and experience, our wages rise. However, the wage increments don’t go on infinitely.
In fact, it holds true only up to a certain point — around the 45-year-old mark — before our wages start tapering off in our golden years. This is corroborated by the data we’ve gathered below for your easy reference.
|Age Group||2020 Median Monthly Salary (Including Employer’s CPF Contributions)||2019 Median Monthly Salary (Including Employer’s CPF Contributions)|
|15 – 19||S$1,170||S$1,053|
|20 – 24||S$2,793||S$2,730|
|25 – 29||S$4,056||S$4,081|
|30 – 34||S$5,265||S$5,197|
|35 – 39||S$6,143||S$6,148|
|40 – 44||S$6,435||S$6,338|
|45 – 49||S$5,850||S$5,850|
|50 – 54||S$4,719||S$4,680|
|55 – 59||S$3,500||S$3,563|
|60 & Over||S$2,330||S$2,562|
Of course, many factors go into the mix when it comes to one’s salary. Amidst the rapidly changing times that we work and live in, it is always a good idea to prioritise upskilling to stay relevant. After all, learning never really stops
Median salary in Singapore by gender
Here comes the age-old gender pay gap question everyone wants to know: do men earn more than women in Singapore in today’s day and age?
The short answer is yes, at least according to statistics from the Ministry of Manpower.
|Men’s Median Monthly Salary (2020)||Men’s Median Monthly Salary (2019)||Women’s Median Monthly Salary (2020)||Women’s Median Monthly Salary (2019)|
|Median Salary (including Employer’s CPF Contributions)||S$4,719||S$4,810||S$4,374||S$4,329|
Median salary in Singapore by education level
In general, the higher your education level, the more money you’ll make.
That’s the reason all of us grew up with our parents’ incessant nagging to “study hard!”.
Higher-paying and higher-skilled jobs are largely reserved for degree-holders. It is therefore not surprising that degree-holders earn the most amongst the lot even if the statistics don’t shed more light on the types of jobs these folks hold.
|Qualification||Median Monthly Salary (including Employer’s CPF Contributions)|
|Diploma & Professional Qualification||S$4,368|
Median salary trend in Singapore
|Age||Below Secondary||Secondary||Post-Secondary (Non-Tertiary)||Diploma & Professional Qualification||Degree||Total|
|30 – 39||S$2,282||S$3,068||S$3,174||S$4,437||S$7,069||S$5,684|
|40 – 49||S$2,497||S$3,510||S$3,549||S$5,395||S$9,800||S$6,187|
|50 – 59||S$2,133||S$3,235||S$3,549||S$5,653||S$10,204||S$4,078|
|55 – 64||S$1,978||S$3,042||S$3,296||S$5,450||S$9,865||S$3,168|
Regardless of one’s highest education qualification attained, people earn less money when they are young, climb the salary scale and then experience a dip when they are older. This is just a fact of life here in Singapore.
Why are we shining the spotlight on the median salary trend? To encourage you to start thinking about retirement, of course!
Like it or not, it is crucial that we plan ahead for retirement and commit to putting money aside regularly when we have the means to hustle and earn more money. The hard truth is that our earning ability dips when we’re old.
You don’t want to wait till it’s too late before regrets become a thing you have to deal with on the daily with little to no extra money to spare. Case in point, retirees who didn’t plan for their retirement only have an average of S$1/day to spend on things they like! Have a look at these shocking statistics — they will push you to get started on your retirement planning.
Help yourself to better financial shape in the new norm, with SingSaver’s all-new Ultimate Savings Guide! Got your free copy yet?
*Note: all figures mentioned exclude NSFs.
Median salary in other comparable countries
According to the National Tax Statistics Annual Report 2020 issued by the National Tax Service, the median income of South Korean workers is 28.2 million won (approx. S$32,324 SGD). This works out to be roughly S$2,693 monthly. The average per capita annual income of South Korean workers in 2020 is 37.91 million won (approx. S$43,454).
What about Hong Kong? The median monthly salary earned by Hong Kong workers in 2020 rose to HKD$18,400 (approx. S$3,171), according to the Census and Statistics Department.
Another interesting nugget of information pertaining to Hong Kong workers? Like Singapore, male employees earned more than female employees across the workforce. That’s not all — those aged between 35 and 44 were the highest earners.
Read these next:
Retirement Planning: 4 Shocking Figures From Great Eastern Survey That’ll Push Your Start Button
Take This Before You Go: A Must-Read Guide For Budding Investors
Beginner’s Guide To CPF Retirement Sums And How To Get There (2021)
Money Confessions: What Would You Do Differently If You Could Restart Your Personal Finance Journey From 10 Years Ago?
Starting A Side Hustle In 2021? These 6 Business Ideas Need Little To $0 Capital
By Denise Bay
While Denise has a thing for travel, K-dramas, 0% sugar bbt (with boba!), Japanese cuisine and flat white, her curious nature means all sorts of random tabs are open on her phone 24/7. She doesn’t like to pay full price for anything, too.