Highest salaries in Argentina?

Fiscal

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I understand doctors don't make that much, but do other professions (law firm partners, hedge fund managers, VPs of major corporations etc...) make very salaries here like they do in the US? For instance, an equity partner at a major law firm in the US usually makes about $1MM or more a year (not really salary but equity draw). Or do the only people who do well here financially have to own businesses, work in government, or play professional soccer?
 

Daniel82

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Depending upon what type of medicine they practice, doctors CAN do very well, the same with lawyers, however very much unlike the US consensus where most doctors and lawyers make affluent salaries, it’s not the case in Argentina.

People who work in the finance sector especially those who work in multinationals can do very well for Argentine standards. I was friends with a senior level banking executive who was making the equivalent of $210,000 USD 2 years ago.
Keep in mind though that this role outside of Argentina would be paid a lot more.

Politicians generally don’t get paid astronomical salaries but have great perks such as official cars driving them everywhere, generous “dietas” (per diems) which are like having a very generous expense account, up to and including those who don’t like in Buenos Aires but have to come for Congress, etc, being given a house allowance so they can have a place when here, etc. It’s not unusual for these perks to be more than the base salary.

Business owners, like everywhere, depends on the type of business, how the market is, and how hard you are willing to work.
 

Fiscal

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Interesting. What kind of lifestyle does $210k really buy you in Buenos Aires? Things seem pretty expensive here other than food.
 

Daniel82

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It’s gotten more expensive, but it just depends on what kind of lifestyle you live. The 210k example is not the norm, but this person lived extremely well: Both children went to private school, they lived in a nice home in a ‘country’ (what the Argentines call an upscale gated community), wife did not work, and they were able to travel abroad each year and would clean out the outlet stores in Orlando and stock up on clothes, electronics, and just about all the other stuff that is over priced or of poor quality (just about everything except leather goods) in Argentina.

Depending upon what you are used to and of course if you are single/married/or have kids, I don’t necessarily think it’s necessary to earn a whopping US style salary to live well, especially taking into account that two of our largest expenses in the US: Health care and education, are free or way more affordable, and often times better, than in the States, that factor alone puts some money back into your pocket.

Also if you are like this guy and make enough to be able to travel back frequently, just do as he did and buy ABSOLUTELY nothing till you travel to the States. You will be spending your money on rent, expensas, basic everyday expenses, and food.
 

Daniel82

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I don’t know about 30k, but it’s true some can be very expensive. I don’t have kids but based on what most of my professional/upper middle class friends with kids tell me, it’s not necessary to dish out the big bucks on elitist schools as many times they are just banking on that- Their elite status, most aren’t the best when it comes to academic results or are comparable to some not so elite private schools, and most of the students aren’t even Argentine.

Actually that kind of goes the same with many things that we expats think are necessary just because of the very fact that it’s the most expensive—- And the places charging know this.

There are a lot of “local best-kept secrets” in just about everything you can think of.

There’s quite a bit of private schools in BsAs which are reasonably priced and won’t have your 6 year old screaming about how he needs the latest iPhone.
 

sergio

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Isnt an elite private school here $30k a year?

Maybe someone who has first hand info can update us on this. I know that during the Menem 1-1 convertibility years schools like St Andrews were about $1,000 pesos/USD a month. I don't know about now but I'd guess the dollar rate is similar. I am not sure however. As for the $210,000 USD annual salary -- that is enormous in Argentina. You can live extremely well on that. And even if the handful (and that's all there is) of elite schools charge USD $30,000 (I doubt it) only a handful of people send their kids there. There are plenty of satisfactory private schools that charge far far less. Suggesting that you have to send your kids to the top five or six private schools is like suggesting that they must attend the top private schools in the UK or the US. A lot of expats seem to live in a bubble, constantly comparing applying a high end foreign lifestyle with Argentina. Life is different here. Only a tiny minority of people can live like the US upper middle class and even they have to cope with the same infrastructure, same bureaucracy, same inefficiency and problems as everyone else in Argentina. They are more protected but they still live here and have to emerge from their bubble from time to time.
 

Daniel82

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I totally agree with expats living in a bubble and giving into the hype. It’s the same with Puerto Madero. Yes, Cabaña Las Lilas is world renowned and excellent (mind you they are a global brand and invest heavily in marketing and PR) but two blocks down at Happening for example is where all the local Chetos go and it’s just as good if not better.

A lot of businesses prey on the naive vulnerable and living in a bubble expat to sell products and services at exhorbitant prices, and while these products and services are generally good (they depend on that so as to get all the fancy reviews) if you compare it to something a local would’ve gotten you’ll honestly feel ripped off.
 

sergio

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Some well off locals may occasionally eat at Las Lilas but I think most might just try it once. There are many other places in Puerto Madero that are good and cost a lot less. I think the place is perceived as touristic by locals. There used to be a parrilla in Recoleta called El Yugo, unfortunately long gone. They served some excellent beef and lamb. The place was a dump in terms of ambience but the food was really good and inexpensive. I had some better meals there than in the Alvear Palace. Anyway, back to the $210,000 USD salary. That's a huge salary in the US (the average US per capita income is around $25,000 a year) and gargantuan in Argentina. To think that it's not that great is nuts.
 
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