The average salary of a Spaniard is 21,000 euros per yearaccording to data from the INE and the Tax Agency collected by The country. Salary less than 11,000 euros means being among the 20% of Spanish adults who earn the least, and earning more than 44,000 euros a year is to be among the richest 10%. Exceeding 38,000 euros means being part of the most economically powerful 20%.
According to the sources indicated, the poorest 33% earn less than 15,000 euros per year and the richest 33% earn 27,000, but the same salary will be different depending on the city in which one lives. Furthermore, the data does not include the underground economy which, according to the latest study prepared by the International Monetary Fundin Spain represented a 17.2% of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2017.
As for the income per household, the formula is different, the wages that enter the house are added and divided by the number of members. This is the formula proposed by Eurostat and the INE: eThe first adult counts one unit, the second 0.5 and each child 0.3.
An example proposed by El País for two adults and two children. A single adult brings home a salary of 22,000 euros per year: “The household is made up of 2.1 units (1 + 0.5 + 0.3 + 0.3), so the equivalent income of the four will be 10,500 euros net. This places them in the 25th percentile, i.e. between 25% of Spaniards who live with less income. On the other hand, an adult with 22,000 euros who lives without company will be in the 72nd percentile, much better”.
Nine out of ten Spaniards do not know if they are rich or poor
Although this data may seem simple, 90% of Spaniards have the wrong idea of their wealth or poverty. Cadena Ser Hoy por Hoy program interviewed Leire Salazar, professor in the Department of Social Structure at the UNED and Doctor of Sociology at the University of Oxford. The expert presented data from a recent study that asked 1,500 respondents for their opinion on their salary. The result, nine out of ten have a fictitious perception of their purchasing power.
People with the highest incomes are those who declare themselves to be less wealthy than they are, while those who earned the least pretended to be less poor than they really were. “There are several hypotheses that explain this phenomenon and one of them is that we live intermingled with people who we consider as rich or as poor as us. The very rich or the very poor can wear Zara and that is misleading,” Salazar explained.
The journalist Kiko Llanera, from El País, who wrote the article, also explains what could be the reason for this distortion. “One of the reasons is desire. If you are poor, you would probably prefer to avoid this label because it is a stigma. And if you’re relatively wealthy, you might not want to think about whether you should be more generous.” “People live mixed with people who look like us, as seen in income or vote maps, the schools we choose, and the cafeterias we frequent. You can be in the richest (or poorest) 25% and not have a clue because your experience is that people around you as rich (or as poor) as you are,” explains Llaneras.