Tight labour market lifted workers' wages in 2011
The tight labour market continued to lift workers' wages despite the slower economic growth last year.
Key findings from the Report on Wages in Singapore 2011, released by the Manpower Ministry (MOM), show that total wages including employer CPF contributions in the private sector rose by 6.1 per cent, higher than the growth of 5.7 per cent in 2010.
Taking into account the rise in consumer price index (CPI), the increase in real terms was 0.9 per cent in 2011, lower than the gain of 2.9 per cent in 2010.
The corresponding figures when adjusted using CPI excluding imputed rentals on owner-occupied accommodation were 1.9 per cent and 2.4 per cent.
The report adds that real wage increases have been broadly in line with labour productivity growth.
From 2000 to 2011, real total wages (including employer CPF contributions) increased by 1.6 per cent per annum (p.a.) while labour productivity grew by 1.7 per cent p.a.
86 per cent of employees in the private sector were under some form of flexible wage system in December 2011. A year ago it was 89 per cent. In 2009, it was 85 per cent.
Managers remained the highest paid occupational group, with median monthly gross wages at $6,630 in June 2011.
The financial services and professional services were among the top three highest-paying industries across many occupational groups.
The accommodation and food services, and construction were among the lower-paying industries.
The gender wage gap was narrower in white-collar occupations.
Women in the age group of 35 to 39 earned close to or the same as men in clerical support, professional, associate professional and technician, and service and sales occupations.
The report also noted that with age, females are more likely to take career breaks to care for their family which reduced their work experience and therefore pay, relative to men.
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