Employees feel pressure as Lunar New Year holiday looms: poll

Taipei, Feb. 9 (CNA) Employees in Taiwan said they have felt pressure as the Lunar New Year holiday approaches, in particular citing an economic burden as they will give out more than NT$9,000 (US$306) in red envelope money on average to their parents, according to the results of a survey released Friday by an online job bank.

The survey found that employees polled by the job bank are planning to give NT$9,388 in red envelope money on average to their parents or parents-in-law for the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday.

The average red envelope money dole-out will account for about one quarter of the average salary of NT$38,250 received by the respondents in the survey, the job bank said.

In ethnic Chinese societies, people tend to give money contained in a red envelope to their parents and parents-in-law, in particular during a traditional family reunion dinner on Lunar New Year's Eve.

According to the survey results, about 23 percent of the polled employees said they will give their parents more than NT$10,000 in red envelope money, 30 percent will give NT$5,000 to NT$10,000, 23 percent will give NT$3,000 to NT$5,000 and 22 percent will give less than NT$3,000.

The job bank said employees in the information sector appeared the most generous, claiming that they are going to give NT$10,516 on average, followed by the financial sector with NT$10,221 on average.

Spending for the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday has become a burden on the employees polled in the survey, with almost 68.8 percent saying that giving red envelope money has become a source of pressure, the survey shows.

In addition, 39 percent of the respondents said they are afraid of the New Year holiday, as they do not want to be asked by parents or relatives about how their work is going and how much they earn per month in their New Year gatherings.

Meanwhile, 37.9 percent of them said they do not like the new year as when they get together with friends and family members, they are often compared with others in a wide range of matters, including jobs, salaries and even marriages.

The survey, conducted Jan. 25-Feb.8, collected 1,064 valid questionnaires with a confidence level of 95 percent and a margin of error of 3.0 percentage points, the job bank said.

Source: Focus Taiwan