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Charted: Hours Worked vs. Salaries in OECD Countries

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A chart with the average number of working hours per week, with a typical weekly wage in 35 OECD countries.

Comparing Weekly Work Hours and Salaries in OECD Countries

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is generally regarded as a collection of highly developed, high income countries. However with 38 member states from across the globe, economic prosperity can still vary widely between these nations.

To illustrate this, Truman Du from Genuine Impact charts the average weekly work hours and salaries across the OECD in 2022.

For wages, the OECD divided a country’s total wage bill by the average number of employees, accounting for inflation by using USD constant prices with a 2016 base year. Importantly, they also adjust using purchasing power parity (PPP) for private consumption of the same year.

Ranked: OECD Countries By Working Hours & Average Pay

Here’s a list of 35 OECD countries ranked by their weekly wage in 2022.

Iceland has the highest weekly wage at $1,528 in the OECD block much higher than all four of its Nordic neighbors. This results in Icelandic workers, on average, earning nearly $55/hour.

RankCountryAvg. Weekly Wage (USD)Avg. Weekly Work (Hours)Avg. Hourly Rate (USD)
1🇮🇸 Iceland$1,528.3327.87$54.84
2🇱🇺 Luxembourg$1,505.9628.33$53.15
3🇺🇸 United States$1,489.6834.83$42.78
4🇨🇭 Switzerland$1,403.7129.40$47.75
5🇧🇪 Belgium$1,247.0729.35$42.50
6🇩🇰 Denmark$1,233.2026.38$46.75
7🇦🇹 Austria$1,226.9527.76$44.19
8🇳🇱 Netherlands$1,215.8727.44$44.31
9🇦🇺 Australia$1,142.4632.83$34.80
10🇨🇦 Canada$1,135.5832.42$35.02
11🇩🇪 Germany$1,133.4725.79$43.96
12🇬🇧 United Kingdom$1,038.1729.46$35.24
13🇳🇴 Norway$1,033.7727.40$37.73
14🇫🇷 France$1,014.6829.07$34.91
15🇮🇪 Ireland$1,004.6731.87$31.52
16🇫🇮 Finland$996.8428.81$34.60
17🇳🇿 New Zealand$975.4333.62$29.02
18🇸🇪 Sweden$969.3627.70$34.99
19🇰🇷 South Korea$940.8136.56$25.73
20🇸🇮 Slovenia$907.7631.13$29.16
21🇮🇹 Italy$863.3332.59$26.49
22🇮🇱 Israel$849.1536.38$23.34
23🇱🇹 Lithuania$843.7431.23$27.01
24🇪🇸 Spain$824.2231.61$26.08
25🇯🇵 Japan$798.2530.90$25.83
26🇵🇱 Poland$709.5534.90$20.33
27🇪🇪 Estonia$667.4034.05$19.60
28🇱🇻 Latvia$656.4629.87$21.98
29🇨🇿 Czech Republic$643.7633.73$19.08
30🇨🇱 Chile$635.4237.75$16.83
31🇵🇹 Portugal$613.8831.44$19.52
32🇭🇺 Hungary$547.5932.68$16.75
33🇸🇰 Slovak Republic$505.0531.19$16.19
34🇬🇷 Greece$499.6036.27$13.77
35🇲🇽 Mexico$320.8742.81$7.49

Note: 2022 data for OECD members Colombia, Costa Rica, and Türkiye is missing from the source and has not been included.

Luxembourg, ranked second place, is the only other country with an average weekly wage that comes in above $1,500.

The U.S. ($1,490), Switzerland ($1,404), and Belgium ($1,247) round out the top five countries with the highest weekly pay in the OECD.

On the other hand, Mexican workers make around $321 a week, the lowest in this dataset.

Hourly Wages & Cost of Living

Despite the wage data using PPP-adjusted metrics, it still doesn’t fully account for discrepancies in local prices, which are influenced by complex factors like tariffs and fuel costs for imported goods, the impact of monopolies and cartels, the price of non-traded goods (energy, housing costs) and government taxes.

And while the difference in salaries seem massive, paying workers enough to meet their costs of living also plays a factor. Countries with higher weekly wages also correlate with a much higher cost of living and vice versa.

Switzerland, Denmark, and Iceland for example are in the top 10 countries with the highest cost of living compared to Mexico, which is far more affordable.

So, while it seems that an average Icelandic worker makes almost 7x what an average Mexican worker makes, the reality of how much of that wage is spent in supporting an average lifestyle in both countries is less direct.

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This article was published as a part of Visual Capitalist's Creator Program, which features data-driven visuals from some of our favorite Creators around the world.

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Demographics

Population Projections: The World’s 6 Largest Countries in 2075

See how the world’s 6 largest countries will grow (or shrink) by 2075, based on the latest UN population projections.

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A cropped chart with the population projections for the world's six most populous countries until 2075.

Population Projections for the World’s 6 Largest Countries

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on Apple or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

The end of the 21st century will see the first plateauing (and eventually shrinking) of world population since the Industrial Revolution. As birth rates fall across the globe, what does this mean for the world’s most populous countries?

To find out, we visualized forecasts for the world’s six largest countries using data from the latest revised version of the UN World Population Prospects 2022.

Projections are based on a “medium fertility scenario”, which assumes countries will converge at a birth rate of 1.85 children per woman, by 2045-2050.

China’s Projected Population Decline

China’s population boom has officially come to an end, with the country reporting two consecutive years of decreases (down 850,000 in 2022, and 2.1 million in 2023).

Year🇨🇳 China🇺🇸 U.S.🇮🇩 Indonesia
1970812M199M114M
1980975M222M146M
19901,144M246M181M
20001,260M281M213M
20101,344M310M242M
20201,424M335M271M
2030E1,417M351M291M
2040E1,380M366M308M
2050E1,317M375M317M
2060E1,211M381M319M
2070E1,091M387M318M
2075E1,035M389M316M

Note: Figures are rounded.

The country’s population in 2050 is forecasted to be 1.32 billion, which is roughly the same as it was in 2007. The UN believes this demographic downtrend will accelerate as we enter the second half of the century.

What does this mean for the Chinese economy? Many worry that a smaller workforce, coupled with an aging population, will increase healthcare expenditures and hamper economic growth.

India’s Population Boom Continues

Meanwhile, the UN believes that India’s population will peak somewhere in the mid 2060s, just shy of the 1.7 billion mark.

India’s population will not age as quickly as its neighbor. Those over the age of 65 will represent less than one-fifth of the population until 2060, and their share of India’s total number of people and will not approach 30% until 2100.

Year🇮🇳 India🇵🇰 Pakistan🇳🇬 Nigeria
1970551M58M55M
1980689M79M72M
1990861M114M94M
20001,050M152M121M
20101,232M192M159M
20201,390M225M206M
2030E1,509M272M260M
2040E1,608M320M318M
2050E1,668M366M375M
2060E1,695M406M427M
2070E1,691M439M472M
2075E1,678M452M491M

Note: Figures are rounded.

Finally, whether these predictions come true or not will depend on how quickly birth rates fall as the country develops. For example, India’s fertility rate fell from 6.2 in 1950, to 2.0 in 2021 (births per woman).

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