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Are You Earning As Much As Your Peers: How Much Is The Average Salary In Singapore For Every Age Group?

Salary peaks in your 40s.


Salary comparison isn’t anything new. We all have a desire to know how we compare to others. On the positive, knowing how much we earn compared to our peers can help us evaluate our career options and find out if we are being underpaid for the work we are doing. On the negative, it can lead to insidious comparisons with our peers and needless job-hopping to find a higher paying job. After all, a career is more than just a salary. A career should also encompass our values, goals and skills development.

If you are curious about how much you are earning compared to your peers, here’s a deep dive into MOM’s Labour Force in Singapore 2020 report and the median income in Singapore.

Note: All figures are extracted from MOM’s Labour Force in Singapore 2020 report and based on the June 2020 numbers.

Read Also: What’s The Median Salary In Singapore (At Every Age, Gender, Education and Race)

Average Salary In Singapore By Age Group

According to MOM, the median gross monthly income from work (excluding employer CPF) is $4,000 for full-time employed residents. This figure includes employee CPF and is what most of us see as our gross monthly salary.

Age (Years) Median Gross Monthly Income From Work (Excluding Employer CPF)
15  –  19 $1,000
20  –  24 $2,405
25  –  29 $3,468
30  –  34 $4,500
35  –  39 $5,333
40  –  44 $5,550
45  –  49 $5,000
50  –  54 $4,117
55  –  59 $3,150
60  &  Over $2,167

 

While MOM’s data starts at the age of 15 to 19, do note that this data is only for full-time employment which is uncommon for this age group.

In general, the median salaries increase as we age, from $2,405 during our early 20s to $5,550 in our early 40s. Between 20-24 and 25-29 years old, the median salary increases the most by $1,063 (or 44%), followed by 30-34 years old where the salary increase is $1,032 (or 32%).

Our salaries peak from 40 to 44 years old at $5,500 and drop significantly after 49 years old. Most of us would advance in our careers between 20s to 40s. Some of us may choose to retire or take a step back from our careers to focus on other areas in life, such as family when we reach our late 40s.

An interesting observation is that even though the official retirement age is 67 years old, the median salary already started declining for full-time employment from 45 years old.

Average Salary Varies Across The Different Occupations For The Different Age Groups

In general, you are more likely to earn above the average salary if you are a PMET, working in the occupation of managers & administrators, professionals and associate professionals & technicians.

Among the 15-19 years old, the most common occupation is clerical support workers with a median salary of $900. The other occupations do not have enough data due to the small number covered as indicated by “s”.

Between the ages of 20 and 24, professionals and associate professionals & technicians earn more than the overall average. From age 25 and onwards, managers and administrators earn most of the listed occupations.

Age (Years) Total Managers & Administrators (Including Working Proprietors) Professionals Associate Professionals & Technicians Clerical Support Workers Service & Sales Workers Craftsmen & Related Trades Workers Plant & Machine Operators & Assemblers Cleaners, Labourers & Related Workers
15  –  19 $1,000 s s s 900 s s s s
20  –  24 $2,405 s 3,500 2,800 1,800 2,000 2,000 1,500 1,733
25  –  29 $3,468 $5,958 4,500 3,218 2,333 2,275 2,167 2,000 1,700
30  –  34 $4,500 $7,500 5,470 3,646 2,500 2,563 2,400 2,000 2,000
35  –  39 $5,333 $8,500 6,525 3,900 2,704 2,500 2,567 2,025 1,500
40  –  44 $5,550 $10,000 7,013 4,000 2,862 2,400 2,567 2,000 1,600
45  –  49 $5,000 $10,375 7,300 3,988 2,800 2,167 2,654 2,148 1,517
50  –  54 $4,117 $10,000 7,000 4,000 2,600 2,030 2,500 2,000 1,435
55  –  59 $3,150 $9,500 7,413 4,000 2,708 1,939 2,500 1,900 1,408
60  &  Over $2,167 $7,583 6,646 3,954 2,417 1,733 2,167 1,650 1,300
Total $4,000 $9,000 5,958 3,600 2,492 2,058 2,383 1,950 1,400

 

Interestingly, while managers & administrators and professionals see a large drop in their salaries (more than $1,000) at 60 and over, other occupations continue to earn close to their median salaries.

It is also worth noting that while the average salary for cleaners, labourers & related workers is $1,400, the medians salary for the age group of 60 & over for this occupation is below the local qualifying salary of $1,400 and would likely see a salary increase due to the policy change announced during the National Day Rally 2021.

Read Also: Local Qualifying Salary: 5 Things You Need To Know About LQS (And Whether It Is A Minimum Wage For Singapore Workers)

Average Salary Varies Across The Different Qualifications For The Different Age Groups

We also take a look at qualifications which tends to be correlated with occupations.

Age (Years) Total Degree Diploma & Professional Qualification Post-Secondary (Non-Tertiary) Secondary Below Secondary
15  –  19 $1,000 s s $1,600 $800 s
20  –  24 $2,405 $3,200 $2,300 $1,800 $1,733 s
25  –  29 $3,468 $4,050 $2,875 $2,300 $2,167 $1,830
30  –  34 $4,500 $5,483 $3,512 $2,816 $2,563 $2,000
35  –  39 $5,333 $7,042 $4,083 $2,800 $2,750 $1,967
40  –  44 $5,550 $8,167 $4,500 $3,021 $3,000 $2,167
45  –  49 $5,000 $9,333 $4,875 $3,245 $3,033 $2,090
50  –  54 $4,117 $9,123 $4,899 $3,250 $3,000 $2,000
55  –  59 $3,150 $9,333 $5,104 $3,000 $2,800 $1,842
60  &  Over $2,167 $8,000 $4,465 $2,500 $2,500 $1,517
Total $4,000 $6,417 $3,792 $2,708 $2,708 $1,800

You are more likely to earn more than the median salary in Singapore if you hold a degree or diploma and professional qualification. In general, the higher your educational qualifications, the more likely you are to earn a salary higher than the median. Perhaps, this justifies why Singaporean parents’ pursuit of academic excellence for their children.

Interestingly, as a degree holder, you are likely to continue to earn more than the average degree holder in your 60s and older. Likewise, diploma holders are also likely to continue to earn more than the average for their qualification level in their retirement years if they choose to continue full-time employment.

Read Also: Disposable Income VS Discretionary Income: How Much Money Do You Really Have If You Earn The Median Salary In Singapore?

Median Salary Peaks In Your 40s

Overall, across age groups, occupations and qualification attainment, median salaries peak during the 40s. Professional occupations and higher academic qualification attainment tend to peak during the late 40s while other occupations and qualification attainment tend to peak earlier during the early 40s.

For those of us who subscribe to the notion of Financial Independence, Retire Early (FIRE), this may be just the motivation for us to work hard during the years before 45 years old, accumulate our nest egg and step down from the grind after 45. For those of us who choose to continue working, we can take comfort that for most non-PMET jobs, our salaries do not see a huge drop even in our 60s.

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