April 11, 2018 | Last Updated: April 16, 2018 03:04:33 PM

Continuous PNAD: 10% of population concentrate nearly half of wage bill in Brazil in 2017

In 2017, those 10% of the population with the highest earnings held 43.3% of the wage bill in Brazil, whereas those 10% with the lowest earnings held 0.7% of it.

The persons who comprised those 1% of the Brazilian population with the highest earnings received, on average, R$27,213 in 2017. This value was 36.1 times higher than the average earnings of those 50% with the lowest earnings (R$754). This ratio was 44.9 times in the Northeast Region and 25 times in the South Region.

In 2017, the persons who had any earnings (from all sources) received, on average, R$ 2,112.00 against R$ 2,124.00 in 2016. In regional terms, the Central-West registered the highest value (R$2,479.00) and the Northeast (R$1,429.00), the lowest one.

In Brazil, the per capita household real monthly average earnings was R$1,271 in 2017 and R$1,285 in 2016. The North (R$810) and Northeast (R$808) Regions recorded the lowest values and the South Region, the highest one (R$1,567).

Still in 2017, 13.7% of the Brazilian households earned cash from the Bolsa Família Social Program, a share below that in 2016 (14.3%). The North (25.8%) and Northeast (28.4%) Regions posted the highest percentages. The per capita average real monthly household earnings in the households that received cash from the Bolsa Família was R$324 and in those that not received, R$1,489.

The Gini index of earnings measures the inequality of their distribution. Its value ranges from zero (equality) to one (maximum inequality). In 2017, the Gini index of the per capita household real monthly average earnings in Brazil was 0.549.

This information is part of the Continuous National Household Sample Survey - Continuous PNAD - Earnings from all sources, of 2017. The complete publication and the sample plan of the survey can be accessed on the right side of this page.

60.2% of Brazilian population have some type of earnings in 2017

In 2017, Brazil had 207.1 million inhabitants. Of this total, 124.6 million (60.2%) had some type of earnings. The South Region (66.0%) registered the highest percentage of persons with some earnings, whereas the North (52.6%) and Northeast (56.5%), the lowest ones.

Persons with earnings from all jobs corresponded to 41.9% of the resident population (86.8 million) in 2017, while 24.1% (50.0 million) had some earnings from other sources. In 2016, these percentages were: 42.4% of the residents had earnings from all jobs (87.1 million) and 24.0% had earnings from other sources (49.3 million).

In 2017, the South Region recorded the highest percentage of persons with earnings effectively received from all jobs (46.8%) and posted the second highest percentage with earnings coming from other sources (25.9%).

On its turn, the Northeast had the lowest percentage of persons with earnings effectively received from all jobs (34.7%) and the highest percentage of those who received from other sources (27.8%).

Earnings from other sources prevail in North and Northeast

Among the earnings from other sources, the most recurrent was retirement or pension (14.1%), followed by other earnings (7.5%), a category that includes unemployment insurance, cash transfer programs and savings accounts, among others. Alimony, donation or monthly allowance of non-residents (2.4%) and rent and lease (1.9%) came after them.

The Northeast had the highest percentage of persons with other earnings (12.1%), followed by the North (10.2%). In the North, this percentage surpassed those from any other source of work.

In the other regions, the category of retirement or pension was the one that registered the highest percentages, highlighted by the South, which had 18.1% of the resident population with this type of earnings, against 17.3% in 2016.

Graph of the percentage of persons with earnings, in the resident population, by Major Region, according to the type of earnings coming from other sources - 2017

North and Northeast have lowest monthly average earnings 

In 2017, the persons who had some earnings (from all sources) received, on average, R$
2,112 against R$ 2,124 in 2016. The Central-West recorded the highest value (R$2,479) and the Northeast (R$1,429), the lowest one. In 2016, the Southeast (R$2,547) had the highest average earnings from all sources.

The real monthly average earnings from all jobs was R$2,237 in 2017 and R$2,268 in 2016. The Northeast (R$1,570) had the lowest value and the Central-West (R$2,566), the highest one. The Southeast posted the only negative change between 2016 (R$2,663) and 2017 (R$2,526).

In 2017, the real monthly average earnings from other sources was of R$1,382, being the lowest value (R$884) reported in the North Region and the highest one (R$1,700), in the Southeast Region.

Among the categories that comprise the earnings from other sources, retirement or pension had the highest value (R$1,750) in Brazil. This happened in every region. The Central-West registered the highest value (R$2,105) and the Northeast (R$1,442), the lowest one. The table below shows the average values of the types of earnings and their regional variations:

Real monthly average earnings of the resident population, with earnings, effectively received, at average prices of 2017, by Major Region, according to the type of earnings - 2016-2017

Type of Earnings Brazil Major Regions
North Northeast Southeast South Central-West
All the sources¹       
2016 2 124 1 511 1 405 2 547 2 316 2 370
2017 2 112 1 541 1 429 2 459 2 373 2 479
All the jobs¹       
2016 2 268 1 662 1 532 2 663 2 415 2 449
2017 2 237 1 693 1 570 2 526 2 454 2 566
Other sources       
2016 1 350  845  928 1 679 1 525 1 581
2017 1 382  884  946 1 700 1 618 1 620
Retirement and pension       
2016 1 728 1 372 1 426 1 898 1 703 2 136
2017 1 750 1 451 1 442 1 906 1 774 2 105
Rent and lease       
2016 1 573 1 041 1 185 1 752 1 666 1 557
2017 1 588 1 019 1 140 1 833 1 635 1 479
Alimony, donation and monthly allowance of non-resident       
2016  595  505  390  742  642  644
2017  605  460  399  762  674  650
Other earnings       
2016  535  391  361  811  659  591
2017 558 398 379 802 759 697
(1) Earnings captured just for employed persons aged 14 years and over  

Those 1% better paid in the population earned 36.1 times more than the half of the population with the lowest earnings.

In Brazil, the effective average earnings from all jobs of half of the population with the lowest earnings was of R$754 in 2017, 2.5% less than in 2016 (R$773). Along these two years, the South Region posted the highest values of this indicator: R$978 (2016) and R$974 (2017). The average reported in this region in 2017 was the double of that registered in the Northeast Region (R$487).

In 2017, the persons comprising those 1% of the Brazilian population with the highest earnings – real monthly average earnings of R$27,213 – received, on average, 36.1 times the earnings of half of the population with the lowest earnings – real monthly average earnings of R$754). The Northeast Region recorded the highest ratio (44.9 times) and the South Region, the lowest one (25.0 times). In 2016, this ratio had been 36.3% in Brazil.

The Gini index measures the concentration of a distribution and varies from zero (prefect equality) to one (maximum inequality). In Brazil, the Gini index of the real monthly average earnings effectively received from all jobs changed from 0.525 in 2016 to 0.524 in 2017.

The Southeast moved from the second highest index in 2016 (0.520) to the second lowest in 2017 (0.510). Along these two years, the South recorded the lowest inequalities (0.465 in 2016 and 0,469 in 2017) and the Northeast, the highest ones (0.545 in 2016 and 0.559 in 2017).

10% best paid earn 2/5 of Brazil´s earnings

The per capita household real monthly average wage bill was of R$263.1 billion in 2017 and of R$263.9 billion in 2016. Those 10% of the population with the lowest earnings held 0.7% of the wage bill, whereas those 10% with the highest earnings held 43.3% of the wage bill or more than 2/5 of the per capita household earnings.

Graph of the distribution of the per capita household real monthly wage bill, effectively received in the reference month, at average prices of the year, according to the percentage of persons in ascending order of per capita household earnings - Brazil - 2016-2017

In Brazil, the per capita household  real monthly average earnings was of R$1,285 in 2016 and of R$1,271 in 2017. The lowest values were in the North (R$810) and Northeast (R$808), while the highest one was in the South (R$1,567).
In 2017, the Gini index of the per capita household real monthly average earnings for Brazil was 0.549, the same registered in 2016.

Gini index of the real monthly average earnings, effectively received in the reference month, per capita household, at average prices of the year, by Major Region- 2017

19.4% of per capita household earnings come from retirement or pension

In 2017, 73.8% of the per capita household monthly average earnings effectively received by the population in Brazil comprised earnings from all the jobs, whereas 26.2% came from other sources – retirement or pension; rent and lease; alimony, donation or monthly allowance of non-residents; and other earnings.

Among the Major Regions, the lowest share of earnings from all jobs was in the Northeast (67.4%) and the highest, in the Central-West (77.8%).

The share of earnings coming from retirement or pension was 19.4% in Brazil. Among the regions, this share was 23.8% in the Northeast; 20.4% in the South; 18.6% in the Southeast; 15.7% in the Central-West and 15.0% in the North.

28.4% of households in Northeast receive Bolsa Família

In Brazil, 13.7% of the households received cash from the Bolsa Família social program in 2017, a percentage below that in 2016 (14.3%). The North (25.8%) and Northeast (28.4%) were the regions that recorded the highest percentages. The Continued Installment Benefits - BPC was received by 3.3% of the households in Brazil in 2017. Once again, the North (5.6%) and Northeast (5.2%) posted the highest percentages.

The per capita household real monthly average earnings in the households that received cash from the Bolsa Família was of R$324 and in those that not received, of R$1,489. For the households that received the BPC, they were R$696 and for those that did not receive it, R$1,293.