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1 in 10 companies eyes freezing wage hike

Some even plan to cut salaries.

According to Singapore Human Resources Institute (SHRI) and Remuneration Data Specialists (RDS), many companies have moderated their expectations somewhat compared to 3 months ago.

Here's more from SHRI and RDS:

Consequently, wage increases, bonus and recruitment plans have been moderated slightly.

Unfortunately, due to increased uncertainty, slightly more companies have frozen wages. The companies that have retrenched or are planning to retrench staff have also increased slightly.

The basic wage increase in 2012 will average 4.0% for the full year, slightly lower than the 4.1% reported 3 months ago. For next year 2013, the basic wage increase is expected to remain at 4.0%.

Additionally, for 2013, the total wage increase is expected to be 2.6% and with inflation expected to be around 3.5% to 4.5%, real wages are likely to drop by 0.9% to 1.9%.

The highest paying sector will be engineering and its related sectors (5%) while the lowest one will be electronics compnonents trading (1.6%).

European companies will pay the highest increases (4.3 to 4.7%) while Asia Pacific companies the lowest (3.2 to 3.9%). In terms of size, large companies will pay the highest (4.3 to 4.7%).

This year, 11% of the companies have frozen or plan to freeze wages, and 1% of the companies has cut or plan to cut wages.

Variable bonuses (excluding AWS) are expected to average 1.6 to 2.0 months this year, unchanged from 3 months ago. For 2013, they are expected to drop slightly to 1.5 to 1.8 months, slightly lower than that projected earlier.

The lower wage increase and bonus this year means a total wage increase of only 1.1% and with the consumer price index expected to be around 4.5%; there will be a drop in real wages of around 3.4%.

For this year 2012, the variables bonuses, as reported three months ago, will average:

2.0 months for Managers
1.8 months for Executives
1.6 months for Non-executives

Highest paying sector will be finance/insurance (2.5 to 3.8 months; higher than the 2.3 to 3.1 months reported 3 months ago), while lowest paying sector will be electronics components trading (around 0.7 months; lower than the 1.0 months projected 3 months ago)

Large companies will pay somewhat higher bonuses (2.0 to 2.6 months) than the medium-sized and small companies.

Local companies will pay slightly more than Asia Pacific, European, Japanese and US companies and also slightly more than that reported 3 months ago (2.0 to 2.4 months
compared to 1.8 to 2.2 months).

For next year 2013, less companies (75% compared to this year’s 89%) expect to pay some form of bonus but the bonuses are expected to decrease slightly to an average of:
1.8 months for managers
1.7 months for executives and
1.5 months for non-executives.

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