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SMIC definition: what is the French minimum wage (SMIC)?

The SMIC (Salaire Minimum Interprofessionnel de Croissance) - is the guarranteed minimum level of salary you can get for a job in France. It was created in 1970 (under the name SMIG). It applies both for the private or public sector and for all employees above 18 years old (except trainees). The minimum does not apply for the fixed salary itself : the salary can be variable depending on performance, but the total of money the employee gets at the end of the month must be greater that the SMIC level.

Depuis 2010, le niveau du SMIC est revalorisé tous les 1er Janvier de chaque année en fonction de l'IPC (Indice des prix à la consommation) auquel on ajoute la moitié de la croissance du pouvoir d'achat du salaire moyen (pouvoir d'achat du salaire horaire de base ouvrier - SHBO). Une hausse automatique intervient également si la hausse des prix (hors tabac) atteint 2% en cours d'année. Le gouvernement peut renforcer ces augmentations automatiques par des "coups de pouce".

Current minimum salary level (SMIC)

Minimum wage as of 1st of January 2014:

Hourly SMIC rate 9,53 € gross / hour
Monthly gross SMIC 1445,38 € gross / month
Net monthly SMIC 1128,72 € net / month

Historical evolution of the SMIC over the last 30 years

The minimum wage evolved regularly over 30 years taking into account price inflation and productivity gains. From 2,04 € gross / hour in 1980, it grew to 9,53 € gross / hour in 2014.

The monthly SMIC gross level increased parallely to the hourly SMIC rate, with the exception of 2005, when the 35 hours week was put in place. While the hourly increase continued, the monthly SMIC decreased to take into account shorter hours (35 against 39 hours).

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