Average Wage Earners Make W3.2 Million a Month

  • By Hwang Ji-yoon

    February 22, 2022 12:03

    The average Korean wage earner made W3.2 million a month before taxes at the end of 2020, but men still earned substantially more than women (US$1=W1,192).

    Men made 1.5 times more than women, while employees of big conglomerates earned twice as much as workers in small companies. People in their 40s earned the most with W3.93 million, followed by those in their 50s (W3.71 million), 30s (W3.44 million), 20s (W2.29 million) and over 60 (W2.17 million).

    Statistics Korea data show that the average monthly wage stood at W3.2 million as of December, 2020, up 3.6 percent from 2019. But some 27.9 percent of salaried workers earned between W1.5 million and W2.5 million a month and 24.1 percent made less than W1.5 million. Only 14.4 percent made more than W5.5 million a month and 2.6 percent more than W10 million.

    The average salary of male workers was W3.71 million, 1.5 times higher than female workers' W2.47 million, though wage growth among female workers was higher at 4.7 percent than male workers' 3.1 percent.

    The biggest gender wage gap was among workers in their 50s at a whopping W1.97 million. Men's wages peaked on average in their 40s at W4.54 million and women's in their 30s at W3.04 million.

    Employees of big conglomerates earned a substantial W5.29 million on average a month but staff of small companies just W2.59 million.

    The financial and insurance sectors paid the highest wages at W6.6 million on average, overtaking the electricity and gas sector's W6.57 million. The industry paying the lowest was hospitality with a paltry W1.63 million.

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