Should I expect a housing allowance?

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  1. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by newsense
    So to get my gross salary in Hong Kong seems quite good in my opinion, don't you agree?
    At your 2-3 years of experience, making your gross London salary in Hong Kong is very good. Just forget about the housing allowances and expat deals, those are for older fatcats who have to be transferred out with the whole family.

    That said, if you're expecting ~hk$55k, that's only around 40k per year in London which isn't too spectacular by London standards. But is very good by HK standards, about 5 times a local fresh graduates salary...

    Trust me, hk$55k per month in HK goes much much further than 3500 per month in London. You just need to accept that you'll be getting a much smaller apartment, but aside from that earning $55k per month in HK will be more like earning 60k per year in London rather than the 40k it converts from.

  2. #42

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    That said, if you're expecting ~hk$55k, that's only around 40k per year in London which isn't too spectacular by London standards.
    I have only been in London for a year (previously in Bournemouth), so I think 40k is above average really, possibly even a little over. And considering before I started in IB 2 1/2 years ago I was earning 12k in a retail bank, I'm more than happy with it for the time being

  3. #43

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    Have salaries in the UK really stagnated that much?

    I started as a new graduate on 12K in 1987, and 4 years in I was earning 36K!
    (And that was just for BT, not in banking)

    Last edited by PDLM; 25-07-2008 at 08:18 PM.

  4. #44

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    It depends where you're living I think, I was working in a retail bank in my home town in the West Midlands; 12k certainly isn't good(!) but it certainly isn't uncommon, I have lots of friends there who still earn the same and even less.

    My point is I don't really think I should be complaining about earning 40k with two years experience in my industry.. I manage to save over half of my salary every month, so I'm hardly on the breadline...


  5. #45

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    40k in London is a fairly typical starting salary now, for any field. For the finance field it's pretty low even. Not trying to be... shitty about it, but just stating the facts. However, outside of London it's a pretty good salary (and converted to HK$, it's a very good salary for someone with just 2 years experience!).

    When I graduated (just a couple of years ago) in the digital design field, my starting salary was just a couple of grand off 40k. It increased the next year (then I came to HK and it decreased!). I had an extra years experience working in the same area before I went to uni, but that didn't make a massive difference. A friend of mine who was in computer science was earning closer to 50k for a tech firm, fresh out of uni.

    I think now the standard fresh graduate salary in London is 30-35k. But you can knock 10k off that outside of London, and perhaps a little more the further you move away from the South East. Still, anything below 20k for a skilled graduate in a decent industry is bad.

    I had a friend who was earning in the low teens around the coast, but... well, he was blatantly earning much less than he should have been. The only reason he kept with it was that he lived with his parents at the time and it was a fairly nice/relaxing place to live (but economically dead).

    In the finance industry though, things are typically much higher. There are fairly unextraordinary bankers in London earning annual bonuses in excess of 500k.

    But trying to bring this back on topic... whilst 40k in London is fairly average and almost the norm for skilled fresh graduates, the same amount in HK is very good for someone at the same level. After SARS fresh grads here were taking job offers with as little as hk$6-10k per month, and even now most local fresh grads (investment bankers excepted) are starting off on around $10-15k. You'd have absolutely no problems supporting a decent single lifestyle in HK on $50k per month. Heck, some graduate invest bankers in HK don't even earn that


  6. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hamton
    In the finance industry though, things are typically much higher. There are fairly unextraordinary bankers in London earning annual bonuses in excess of 500k.
    And for anyone trying to understand why there are people in the world who suddenly can't afford a kilo of rice that sentence contains all the clues you need.

  7. #47

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    40k in London is a fairly typical starting salary now, for any field. For the finance field it's pretty low even. Not trying to be... shitty about it, but just stating the facts. However, outside of London it's a pretty good salary (and converted to HK$, it's a very good salary for someone with just 2 years experience!).
    Just to point out, I don't actually have a university degree... I am only educated to college level. 40k is fairly typical in finance, not disputing that, but there are also a lot of people that earn far less than that and a lot that earn a hell of a lot more!.

    I moved up from a large IB with it's back office based in Southern England, and average salaries there were 20k. That's why everyone jumps ship after a year and moves to London, cos you effectively get paid double for doing the same job. But employers always look at your previous salary; I know people from the same department as me who were offered jobs for 30k in London. Once you're here, it's very easy to increase your earning potential, but having only been here a year I haven't really had that opportunity yet. I think as long as you're happy with what you're earning, which I am, there's no problem

    Anyway like u say, getting off the point a bit! Thanks for all your comments anyway, all have been very useful!

  8. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by PDLM
    And for anyone trying to understand why there are people in the world who suddenly can't afford a kilo of rice that sentence contains all the clues you need.

    Our helper just came home from seeing her family in the philippines and she was describing how dire it is there with people queuing for rice. Apparently there are two lines one for the cheaper rice and one for more than double the price. The queues are very long and there's a set amount that can be purchased. It's beyond comprehension for most of us.

    Question... and I'm really looking for a serious answer, not a snippy one ... why is that all the fault of the Banker earning a 500k bonus?

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hamton
    In the finance industry though, things are typically much higher. There are fairly unextraordinary bankers in London earning annual bonuses in excess of 500k.
    Don't want to start a fight here, but it is not
    the banker's "fault" if he is paid 500k...it is the employer's one.

  10. #50

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    OP: don't worry, you'll be fine. The figures quoted for rent assume you are living the life of a rich expat. I live in a nice flat with wife, 3 kids and a maid. On the island, balcony overlooking the harbour, plenty of space for us (we even have an unused room for visitors) and 20 mins from Central. All for 17k, so 30k minimum for a single person is ridiculous.

    Some people really need to go and visit places like the Philippines (and not the resorts) to get a reality check. We have just taken in an orphan whose mother died from an untreated ectopic pregnancy (it took a long time and a lot of screaming before she eventually died) and father died shortly after from a heart attack while everybody stood around helpless.


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