Jobs increase at SMEs but shrink at conglomerates

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Jobs increase at SMEs but shrink at conglomerates

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) were the big employers in 2016, hiring 286,000 people, while conglomerates erased jobs, state data showed Friday.

Numbers from Statistics Korea said conglomerates had 3.67 million jobs as of end-2016, 41,000 less than the previous year. SMEs had 15.5 million jobs as of December 2016.

More women lost jobs than men at conglomerates. Positions for men diminished by 15,000 in the measured years compared with 26,000 for women.

SMEs hired more than 200,000 men to give 9.61 million jobs in total. They newly employed 79,000 women for a total of 5.89 million jobs for them at the end of 2016.

The salary gap, however, remained wide. The average monthly wage in December 2016 was 4.74 million won ($4,452) for conglomerates and 2.24 million won for SMEs.

Men earned 3.16 million won.

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