What your salary is really worth: Rand vs US Dollar

Your salary may increase in rand terms every year, but it is losing value in the international market thanks to SA’s weakening currency.

By - January 11, 2016 Share on LinkedIn
Rand Dollar Notes

The rand has come under severe pressure against the US dollar over the past 5 years, with President Jacob Zuma’s recent decision to axe Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene not helping investor confidence.

Following the move, the rand broke through R15 to the dollar – a new low for the local currency.

The rand regained some value after Zuma quickly withdrew new Finance Minister David van Rooyen, replacing him with Pravin Gordhan.

This was short lived, though, with the rand hitting a new low of R17.99 to the dollar on the evening of 10 January.

Your salary vs the US dollar

There are many negative effects of a weak rand, particularly when it comes to importing goods which are sold in foreign currency.

While your salary may be keeping up with the inflation rate and growing in nominal terms, its value versus the US dollar is declining rapidly.

This affects the purchasing power of your money, especially when it comes to travelling abroad or buying goods produced overseas.

The infographics and tables below show the “real value” of the salary of an IT manager and software developer from 2011 to 2015 versus the dollar.

Salary information was taken from Career Junction’s annual salary review report – with the average starting wage for a skilled employee referenced.

Exchange rate information is based on information from Reuters.

IT Manager

IT Manager Salary vs US Dollar

IT Manager Salary vs US Dollar
Year Salary Dollar exchange rate Salary in dollar terms
2011 R31,932 R6.57 $4,860
2012 R30,044 R7.50 $4,006
2013 R34,448 R9.88 $3,487
2014 R28,333 R10.76 $2,633
2015 R37,043 R11.91 $3,110
2016 R38,821 R16.50 $2,353

Software Developer

Software Developer Salary vs US Dollar

Software Developer Salary vs US Dollar
Year Salary Dollar exchange rate Salary in dollar terms
2011 R16,563 R6.57 $2,521
2012 R25,171 R7.50 $3,356
2013 R22,451 R9.88 $2,272
2014 R25,612 R10.76 $2,380
2015 R26,982 R11.91 $2,265
2016 R28,277 R16.50 $1,714

Note: 2016 salary figures were calculated by increasing 2015 figures by CPIX for November 2015 (year-on-year) – 4.8%.

More on the rand

Rand hits R17.99 to US Dollar

The rand could fall to R19/$ – economist

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