Do your earnings place you among the richest one percent of South Africans?


If you earn more than R48,753 per month, you are in the top one percent of earners in SA.

According to research conducted by the Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit (SALDRU), in order to fall into the one percent that makes up the richest South Africans, you need to earn a household income of R48,753 per month, after tax. To fall among the richest 10 percent of South Africans, you need to take home R7,313 per month. 

“The notion that there’s this enormous economic imbalance between elites and the rest of us received a lot of coverage in the aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis when the idea of the one percent versus the 99 percent was introduced,” the report stated. 

SALDRU has published a tool that tells you how your monthly income compares to the rest of the country, and into which percentile your household falls.

The recently-adjusted upper-bound poverty line is currently at R1,227 per person per month. 55.5 percent of the South African population lives below this line. 

The middle-road income, separating the top half and bottom half of South Africa, is R1,149 per month after tax. This falls below the upper-bound poverty line. 

The food poverty line is currently R561 per person per month. 25.2 percent of South Africans live below this line. 

28 percent of South Africans live on less than R2,500 per month. The median wage in South Africa is R3,300, and each wage supports 3.5 people. 

“The tally of the cost of some typical monthly household expenses which households living on low incomes tell us they reasonably expect to cover is R7,624,13 in July 2019,” the study said. If you are among the nine percent that earns more than R7,700 per month after tax, you are able to live on this base-line. 

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