CEMPRE 2018: Number of enterprises and other organizations retreats 1.8%, larger enterprises increase 1.1%

June 25, 2020 10h00 AM | Last Updated: June 30, 2020 11h37 AM

In 2018, the number of enterprises and other active formal organizations retreated 1.8% over 2017, which represented less 91.2 thousand units in a universe of 4.9 million. This was the smallest amount of enterprises since 2009, when they added up to nearly 4.8 million. Despite this drop, the enterprises with 250 persons or more increased 1.1% and those with less than ten, retracted. 

The number of employed persons rose 0.5% (more 278.3 persons), adding up to 52.2 million, being 45.5 million (87.0%) as salaried persons and 6.8 million (13.0%) as partners or owners.  

The salaried employed personnel increased 0.9% (386.0 thousand persons) and, conversely, partners and owners decreased 1.6% (107.6 thousand persons). The segment of Administrative activities and complementary services registered the highest positive balance (131 thousand persons) and Other services activities, the highest negative balance (-63 thousand).

In real terms, the total wages and other compensation rose 0.7% and the average monthly wage, 0.2%. Wages and other compensation added up to R$1.8 trillion. And the average monthly wage was R$2,952.87. The highest average monthly wages were paid in the sector of Electricity and gas (R$7,624.04) and the lowest ones, in Housing and food (R$1,532.46). The difference between an enterprise with 250 workers or more and one with less than ten can reach 137.5%.

In 2018, the average monthly wage of men was 19.8% higher than that of women, though women´s rose 0.7% and men´s fell 0.1% in relation to 2017. The opportunities for men were bigger in the area of Water, sewage and waste management activities and, for women, in the area of Professional, scientific and technical activities.

The relative share of employed persons with higher education increased 0.9 percentage points between 2017 and 2018, changing from 22.6% to 23.5%, and that of persons without higher education declined from 77.4% to 76.5%. The number of salaried persons without graduation remained stable (-0.2%), whereas those with graduation rose 4.6%. 

In 2018, 4.9 million enterprises and other organizations in operation in Brazil had 5.4 million local units, which employed 52.2 million persons on December 31, 45.5 million of them salaried, who earned R$1.8 trillion in wages and other compensation. São Paulo posted the highest relative shares in all variables: 30.5% in the number of local units, 28.6% in total employed persons, 28.4% in salaried employed persons and 32.1% in wages and other compensation.

This information comprises the Statistics of the Central Register of Enterprises study - CEMPRE 2018. 

In the analysis by economic activity, the section of Trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles concentrated most of the salaried employed persons (8.8 million) and maintained the highest share in number of enterprises and other organizations (36.3%), of total number of employed persons (21.6%) and of salaried employed persons (19.4%) in 2018. It ranked in the third position in relation to wages and other compensation (12.6%).

The section of Manufacturing industries ranked in the second position in total employed persons (14.9%) and in wages and other compensation (16.5%), and, in the third position, in number of enterprises (7.8%) and salaried employed persons (15.9%). Until 2014, this section ranked in the second position in salaried employed persons. Due to successive drops in the share of total Brazil, it has ranked in the third position since 2015.

The section of Public administration, defense and social security ranked in the second position in salaried persons (17.0%) and in the first position in wages and other compensation (24.5%).

The section of Administrative activities and complementary services ranked in the second position in number of enterprises (9.8%) and, in the fourth position, in total employed persons (9.3%) and salaried employed persons (9.5%).

Housing and food pay the lowest wages and Electricity and gas, the highest ones

Concerning the number of employed persons, the highlights were Administrative activities and complementary services, which accounted for 33.8% of the new salaried jobs, Human health and social services, responsible for 24.3%, and Professional, scientific and technical activities, which contributed with 13.6%. Other services activities registered a decrease of 63.1 thousand salaried persons (-16.4%) and Manufacturing industries, of 12.2 thousand persons (-3.2%).

The average monthly wage was R$2,952.87, the equivalent to 3.1 minimum wages. The highest average monthly wages were paid in the sectors of Electricity and gas (R$7,624.04), Financial activities, insurance and related services (R$ 7,010.56) and International organizations and other extraterritorial institutions (R$5,523.11), which represented, respectively, values 158.2%, 137.4% and 87.0% above the average. Yet, these activities together accounted for only 2.5% of the salaried employed persons (1.1 million persons).

On the other hand, the lowest wages were paid in Housing and food (R$1,532.46), Administrative activities and complementary services (R$1,812.89) and Trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles (R$1,940.10), with values 48.1%, 38.6% and 34.3% below the average, respectively, accounting together for 33.0% of the salaried persons (15.0 million).

Larger enterprises and other organizations pay higher wages

Small-sized enterprises and organizations are the majority in CEMPRE. In 2018, 87.3% had less than ten persons working. It should be highlighted that the study did not include neither micro-entrepreneurs nor informal jobs. 10.9% of the enterprises and organizations had 10 to 49 employed persons; 1.4%, 50 to 249 persons; and only 0.4%, 250 persons or more.

The highest average monthly wages were paid by enterprises and other organizations with 250 persons or more (R$3,787.22), while the lowest wages were paid by those employing up to nine persons (R$1,594.84). Considering the average value (R$2,952.87), only enterprises and organizations with 250 persons or more paid wages above this level. The difference between an enterprise with 250 workers or more and one with less than ten can reach 137.5%.

Number of enterprises decreases, but that of larger enterprises increases

The total number of formal enterprises and other organizations operating in Brazil retreated (1.8%) between 2017 and 2018, due to decrease of the smaller enterprises (0 to 9 employed persons), which were more affected by negative variables, either in the number of enterprises (-2.1%) or in the contingent of employed persons (-1.4%) or the value of wages and other compensation (-1.6%).

In contrast, those with 50 to 249 persons and with 250 persons or more rose (1.1%), which also increased in number of organizations (1.8% and 1.1%), employed persons (1.7% and 1.3%) and total compensation (0.2% and 1.3%, respectively).

In the enterprises and organizations in the range of 10 to 49 persons, the number of enterprises, total employed and salaried persons remained stable. However, the wage bill reduced 1.0%.

Relative change of the number of enterprises and other organizations. total employed persons. salaried employed persons on December 31 and wages and other compensation. by size - Brazil - 2017-2018
Ranges of total employed persons Number of enterprises and other organizations
(p.p.)
Total employed persons on Dec 31
(p.p.)
Salaried employed persons on Dec 31
(p.p.)
Wages and other compensation
(p.p.)
Total -1.80 0.50 0.90 0.70
0 to 9 persons -2.10 -1.40 -1.10 -1.60
10 to 49 persons -0.10 0.10 0.20 -1.00
50 to 249 persons 1.80 1.70 1.80 0.20
250 persons or more 1.10 1.30 1.30 1.30
Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas, Coordenação de Cadastro e Classificações, Cadastro Central de Empresas 2017-2018.

Those with higher education nearly triple wages

In 2018, 55.4% of the salaried employed persons were men and 44.6%, women, and men (R$3,189.05) earned an average monthly wage 19.8% higher then women (R$2,661.25). Yet, the difference decreased, since the women´s wages increased 0.7% (it was R$2,643.60) and men´s wages reduced 0.1% (it was R$3,191.97) between 2017 and 2018.

The increase in the number of salaried employed persons occurred, in both sexes, in 13 out of the 20 sections investigated in the survey, being the areas of Water, sewage, waste management activities and decontamination (7.5% for men and 4.6% for women) the area that mostly increased for men and Professional, scientific and technical activities (5.3%, though the increase was even higher for men, 5.9%) the area that mostly increased for women. Women managed to improve their share in Financial activities, insurance and related services, which increased 2.6% for men against 4.7% for women.

Conversely, the most significant drops were in Other services activities (-5.6% for men and -8.7% for women); Mining and quarrying industries (-2.1% and -0.4%); and Construction (-0.1% and -2.7%, respectively).

Looking at schooling level, 76.5% of the salaried employed persons did not have higher education and 23.5%, had it. The average monthly wage of those with graduation (R$5,969.32), who are 47.7% of the workers, was nearly the triple of those without graduation (R$2,020.88), who are 52.3% of the total. Compared with 2017, the average wage among those without higher education decreased 0.9% (it was R$2,039.53) and 1.0% among those with higher education (it was R$6,032.65).

Between 2017 and 2018, the number of salaried persons without higher education remained stable
(-0.2%), whereas those with higher education rose 4.6%. As a result, the relative share of the personnel with higher education increased 0.9 percentage points in the period, changing from 22.6% to 23.5%, and that of the personnel without higher education retreated from 77.4% to 76.5%.

Enterprises pay higher wages for persons with higher education

Enterprises paid the lowest average monthly wages (R$2,559.23) and public administration offices, the highest ones (R$4,253.27). Compared with 2017, the average wage in the public administration rose 0.6%, 0.2% in the enterprises and fell 1.2% in the non-profit entities.

Concerning sex, both for men and women, the highest average wage was paid by public administration (R$4,962.85 and R$3,755.49, respectively), whereas the enterprise entities paid the lowest values (R$2,823.45 and R$2,148.61, respectively).

Concerning the schooling level, the highest average wage of the salaried personnel without higher education was paid by public administration (R$2,634.98), while the lowest one was paid by non-profit entities (R$1,862.80). Considering the salaried personnel with higher education, the highest average wage was paid by enterprise entities (R$6,227.59), followed by the value paid by public administration (R$5,952.18), and the lowest one (R$4,812.19), by non-profit entities.

Average monthly wage, by sex and schooling level, according to legal nature - 2018
Legal nature Average monthly wage (R$)
Total Sex Schooling level
Men Women Without higher education With higher education
Total 2,952.87 3,189.05 2,661.25 2,020.88 5,969.32
Public administration 4,253.27 4,962.85 3,755.49 2,634.98 5,952.18
Enterprise entities 2,559.23 2,823.45 2,148.61 1,916.80 6,227.59
Non-profit entities 2,775.97 2,985.83 2,613.25 1,862.80 4,812.19
Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas, Coordenação de Cadastro e Classificações, Cadastro Central de Empresas 2018.

Salaried women almost triple men between 2009 and 2018

In 2009, men represented 58.1% of the salaried employed persons. Its share has been reducing year after year,  hitting 55.4% in 2017 and remaining at this level in 2018. This represents a drop of 2.7 percentage points in the 2009-2018 period. This happened because salaried men grew only 7.8%, whereas salaried women grew almost tripled, 20.4%.

Of the balance of 5.2 million new salaried job positions in the period between 2009 and 2018, 3.4 million (65.4%) were occupied by women and 1.8 million (34.6%), by men.

In ten years, 77.0% of the new job positions were for persons with higher education.

Concerning schooling level, persons without higher education strongly prevailed in the salaried employed persons of the Brazilian organizations. However, its share has been continuously reducing, changing from 83.5% in 2009 to 76.5% in 2018, i.e., a decrease of 7.0 percentage points.

It was due to the different change rates of these groups: salaried employed personnel without higher education increased 3.6%, whereas those with higher education rose 60.9%. Of the balance of 5.2 million new salaried job positions, 4.0 million (77.0%) were occupied by persons with higher education and 1.2 million (23.0%), by persons without higher education. As a result, the total number of employed persons with higher education in the Brazilian organizations changed from 6.6 million in 2009 to 10.7 million in 2018. With this increase, its share changed from 16.5% to 23.5%.

Percentage distribution of the salaried employed persons,
by sex and schooling level - Brazil - 2009-2018
Year Percentage distribution of the salaried employed persons on Dec 31 (%)
Sex Schooling level
Men Women Without higher education With higher education
2009 58.1 41.9 83.5 16.5
2010 57.9 42.1 83.4 16.6
2011 57.7 42.3 82.9 17.1
2012 57.3 42.7 82.3 17.7
2013 57.0 43.0 81.5 18.5
2014 56.5 43.5 80.4 19.6
2015 56.0 44.0 79.6 20.4
2016 55.6 44.4 78.3 21.7
2017 55.4 44.6 77.4 22.6
2018 55.4 44.6 76.5 23.5
Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas, Coordenação de Cadastro e Classificações, Cadastro Central de Empresas 2009-2018.

In ten years, pay gap between men and women falls from 25.0% to 19.8%

Between 2009 and 2018, the monthly average salaries grew 13.8% in real terms, changing from R$2,594.31 to R$2,952.87. Women earned real increases above those of men in that period (17.4% and 12.6%, respectively), which allowed the reduction of the pay gap between men and women from 25.0% to 19.8%.

In the analysis by schooling level, it should be noticed that the salary evolution of those without higher education was bigger than that among those with higher education (7.4% and -2.0%, respectively). Therefore, the pay gap between these two groups also decreased: from 223.5% to 195.4%. Even with this drop, the monthly average wages paid to the salaried employed persons with higher education in 2018, R$5,969.32, nearly tripled the values paid to those without complete higher education, R$2,020.88.

Average monthly wages, in real terms, by sex and schooling level, with indication of pay gaps - Brazil - 2009-2018
Year Average monthly wages, in real terms
Total Sex Schooling level
Man Woman Man/
Woman pay gap (%)
Without higher education With higher education Pay gap with higher education/
without higher education (%)
2009 2,594.31 2,832.54 2,266.88 25.0 1,882.35 6,089.19 223.5
2010 2,610.29 2,857.38 2,271.70 25.8 1,891.35 6,127.19 224.0
2011 2,672.87 2,926.88 2,327.71 25.7 1,930.46 6,165.56 219.4
2012 2,728.25 2,985.91 2,383.07 25.3 1,963.88 6,185.53 215.0
2013 2,829.97 3,104.93 2,467.72 25.8 2,028.80 6,286.07 209.8
2014 2,882.02 3,156.54 2,524.94 25.0 2,052.18 6,254.16 204.8
2015 2,790.86 3,047.25 2,465.95 23.6 1,964.14 6,019.62 206.5
2016 2,809.47 3,056.90 2,500.98 22.2 1,970.92 5,814.72 195.0
2017 2,946.59 3,191.97 2,643.60 20.7 2,039.53 6,032.65 195.8
2018 2,952.87 3,189.05 2,661.25 19.8 2,020.88 5,969.32 195.4
Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas, Coordenação de Cadastro e Classificações, Cadastro Central de Empresas 2009-2018.
Note: The National Consumer Price Index - INPC, calculated by the IBGE, was used as a deflator of the average monthly wage of 2017, having 2018 as the reference year.

Rio de Janeiro had the biggest absolute losses of personnel and wages

The number of local units retreated 1.4% (-77.6 thousand) in Brazil between 2017 and 2018 (-77.6 thousand), with drops in all the regions, being the Northeast (2.5%) and Central-West (1.6%) the most significant. On the other hand, the Southeast and Northeast registered the biggest absolute drops in the number of local units, -33.5 thousand and -21.5 thousand, respectively. In turn, the total and salaried employed personnel increased in all the regions. The biggest gains were recorded in the Southeast (80.3 thousand and 144.2 thousand) and in the Northeast (83.1 thousand and 104.0 thousand).

The states that mostly contributed to the gains of salaried persons in these regions were São Paulo (130.0 thousand), Bahia (45.0 thousand), highlighted by Administrative activities and complementary services; Minas Gerais (43.4 thousand), Ceará (27.4 thousand), highlighted by Construction and Maranhão (26.1 mil), highlighted by the activity of Public administration.

Wages and other compensation also increased, with the highest balances in the Northeast and North regions, with 4.9 billion and 3.1 billion, respectively, highlighted by Maranhão (R$1.5 billion), Pará (R$1.2 billion) and Amazonas (R$1.1 billion), sates where the activity of Public administrationdefense and social security has a strong share. The state of Rio de Janeiro registered the biggest absolute and relative reduction of wages (R$813.8 million and 0.5%) and the biggest absolute losses in employed (51.0 thousand) and salaried (40.9 thousand) personnel.