Real wage increases in 2016 predicted to be lower than in 2015: ECA survey

SINGAPORE - Employees in Singapore are likely to see their salaries increase by an average of 4 per cent again in 2016.

These are the findings from the latest Salary Trends survey released on Thursday by ECA International, a consultancy that provides information for the management and assignment of employees around the world.

However, the firm noted that with inflation rates expecting to increase to 1.8 per cent in 2016, real wage increases will be 2.2 per cent. This is 1.8 percentage points down from the real wage increase of 4 per cent seen in 2015.

The survey reports current and projected salary increases for local employees. It provides information on real pay rises by factoring in inflation rates, and more than 159 companies provided data on their Singapore-based staff.

But ECA still noted that Singapore is still one of the more positive countries globally. Singapore makes it to the list of the top 20 countries for forecasted real wage increases in 2016.

"The Singapore economy will clearly be affected by the slowdown in emerging markets, owing to its relationship with major economies in the Asean region and China," noted Mr Lee Quane, ECA International's regional director for Asia.

"However, salaries will increase this year and next year at the same rate as in recent years when economic growth has been more stable. This suggests that the rates of salary increase that we see in 2015 and 2016 are what companies consider necessary to retain their human capital."

rachaelb@sph.com.sg