How much do you need to earn to be classed as rich in France? 

If your monthly pay cheque is above €4,170 then you’re in the top 10% of earners in France, but is that enough to make you ‘rich’? Well, that all depends on your family situation. 

The Observatoire des Inégalités, an independent French information gathering organisation, has looked at the range of monthly incomes in France with the goal of working out how much a person needs to earn in order to be classed as wealthy. 

Currently the median French salary sits at €1,800, according to data from INSEE, the nation’s official statistical agency. A quarter of full-time employees make less than €1,670, while a half earn under €2,092. At the higher end, 23% of workers make €3,000 a month while the top 10% of earners in the country bank €4,170. The biggest pay cheques, those over €10,000 per month, are reserved for the top 1% of salaried workers.  

For over a decade now, the Observatoire des Inégalités has been trying to determine thresholds for both poverty and wealth in France. The calculations are made with the help of the French Observatory of Economic Conditions (OFCE), another independent organisation, and the latest data put out by INSEE to compile up-to-date reports, such as this new insight into the wealth divide. 

“Since we consider that the poverty line is set at half the median standard of living, we have chosen to establish the wealth threshold at twice the median standard of living,” said Louis Maurin, the director of the Observatoire des Inégalités, to Le Figaro of this latest report into wealth classification.  


In order to be considered rich in France, a single person with no dependents must make €3,860 net per month. Roughly 7% to 8% of the population falls into this category.  

When adding in different factors, the monthly nut changes considerably. For example, to be wealthy as a single parent with a child under 14, an employee needs to be making €5,018 a month to be classed as wealthy. For a couple with one child under the age of 14, their combined salary must be €6,948, which rises to €9,650 for two children over 14 and €10,808 for three children, with one under 14. A couple without children, meanwhile, need to be earning €5,790 to be counted among France’s most well-off.  

To read the report for yourself, click here


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Photo source: Priscilla de Preez, Unsplash