Graduates real starting pay decreased 2% last 9 years?

Photo:John Walker/CC BY 2.0Photo:John Walker/CC BY 2.0

Higher salaries for university graduates

I refer to the article “Higher salaries for university graduates from NUS, NTU and SMU in 2016” (Straits Times, Feb 22).

It states that “Median monthly salaries for university graduates last year rose to a new high of $3,360, up from $3,300 for the class of 2015.

The survey also found that about nine in 10 graduates, or 89.7 per cent, were able to find employment within six months of finishing their final examinations. The figure is similar to previous years.

Full-time jobs dropped from 83.1 to 80.2%?

However, about 80.2 per cent of the graduates in the labour force secured permanent full-time jobs, a dip from the 83.1 per cent in 2015.”

According to the Singapore Yearbook of Manpower Statistics 2014 (page H30) – the median gross monthly starting salary of university graduates in full-time permanent employment was $2,750 in 2007.

Graduates’ real starting pay declined 2% last 9 years?

Does this mean that their starting salaries increased by about 22 per cent ($3,360 divided by $2,750) in the last nine years?

Since inflation was about 24.2 per cent from 2007 (CPI 79.65) to 2016 (CPI 98.932) – does it mean that in real terms – their starting salaries declined by about -2 per cent (24 – 22%) in the last nine years?

Leong Sze Hian


About the Author

Leong Sze Hian has served as the president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), Hotel Mumbai (associate producer), invited to speak more than 200 times in about 40 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of 2 countries. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.