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Japan's rigid labor market limits the pool of potential job switchers, posing a serious obstacle to broader wage increases.

Surge in job hopping boosts Japanese wages

One in three workers saw salary increases of 10% or more after switching jobs

MOTOKAZU MATSUI, KYO KITAZUME and YUKIKO UNE, Nikkei staff writers | Japan

TOKYO -- Job hopping has become a key driver of pay increases in Japan. The average salary offered to midcareer job seekers rose 3% over the year through February, compared to an overall wage increase of 1.2%. In 2022, a record 33% of job switchers saw pay increases of 10% or more.

A 28-year-old IT engineer at Simplex Holdings saw his annual pay jump 15% to more than 7 million yen ($51,600) after he moved from a major systems developer last fall. "I am trying much harder to improve my skills now because I have to produce results matching my new salary," he said.

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