The China Post news staff

TAIPEI, Taiwan — University graduates seeking work expect to earn an average of NT$31,284 a month, 0.8 percent less than what they expected last year, according to a survey released on Sunday. Online job bank yes123’s found that monthly wage expectations this year were down by NT$254 year-on-year. Graduate Ceiling For job bank spokesperson Yang Tsung-pin (楊宗斌), the latest survey raises concern that NT$30,000 will become a ceiling of sorts for fresh college graduates, dissuading them from negotiating for better wages. “For fresh graduates entering the workforce for the first time, (the survey) shows that they’re not holding high expectations to get higher wages.” The job bank also cross-referenced the results with the respondents’ education background. On average, respondents graduating with a bachelor’s degree named NT$29,863 as their expected monthly wage and those with a master’s degree set their sights on NT$35,672.

On the industry side of the survey, companies were willing to give candidates with a bachelor’s degree an average of NT$26,818, NT$509 more than they wanted to dish out last year. The 1.9 percent increase takes the wage to its highest level in four years. Employers were willing to pay NT$25,952 a month in 2015 and NT$24,744 in 2014, according to the job bank. For graduates with master’s degrees, industries were willing to pay an average of NT$28,600 this year, compared to last year’s NT$28,264. The figure marks a 1.2 percent increase – of NT$336 – and is the highest in three years. In 2015, employers were willing to pay graduates with an master’s degree NT$28,522 a month on average. In 2014, they were willing to pay NT$27,616.

The survey was conducted online from Feb. 16 to March 1 among randomly selected yes123 members who are about to graduate from university, are finishing or have already finished military service, or are exempt from conscription. A total of 1,360 valid samples were collected, with a margin of error of 2.66 percentage points. A total of 928 valid samples were collected from enterprises, with a margin of error of 3.22 percentage points.