Real incomes in Singapore climb 5.4 per cent in 2015

Office workers in the Central Business District (CBD) in Singapore.
Office workers in the Central Business District (CBD) in Singapore.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Real income grew strongly in 2015 due to the tight labour market, according to preliminary figures released by the Manpower Ministry (MOM) on Monday (Nov 30).

After accounting for negative inflation, median income, including employer CPF contributions, rose by 5.4 per cent for full-time employed Singapore citizens and permanent residents, after a poor showing last year.

The median salary was $3,949 as at June this year.

MOM said in its latest Singapore Workforce report that the growth was due to continued labour market tightness and manpower shortages in some industries.

Despite ongoing initiatives to boost their incomes, workers in the bottom 20 per cent income bracket saw their pay go up at a slower pace than the average worker over the past five years. After taking inflation into account, incomes at the 20th percentile rose by 2.1 per cent a year, while those at the median rose 3.1 per cent a year from 2010 to 2015.

More Singapore residents are entering the labour force and finding jobs. The labour force participation rate for 2015 rose to 68.3 per cent, up from 67 per cent last year, growing faster for women than for men.

The proportion of Singapore residents in jobs also rose slightly to 80.5 per cent, up from 79.7 per cent last year.