Difference Between Wage and Income

The two words ‘wage’ and ‘income’ might look similar with no difference at all whatsoever, but strictly speaking there is difference between the two words.

The word ‘wage’ is often used in the plural as ‘wages’ whereas the word ‘income’ is a collective noun and the form ‘incomes’ is used sparingly. It is used as an uncountable noun for that matter.

Wages is usually paid to you by the hour or in short it can be said wages is a kind of income that is earned by the hour for an agreed number of hours per week. You may for example earn wages of $10 per hour in a factory as its employee.

It is interesting to note that the wages that you earn by the hour are usually paid to you once a week or more recently in a few countries once a month. It is quite remarkable to know that in America wages are paid to the employee or the worker once every fortnight. It is more importantly true that you get paid actually for the number of hours you work and not the number of days you work.

The word ‘income’ is used in altogether a different sense. It conveys the sense of the money that you receive. The money is inclusive of your salary, other earnings by way of extra part time jobs and money earned from interest payments and shares too. Income is usually calculated for the month. Sometimes for auditing purposes income is calculated for the whole year.

In short income can be defined as ‘the money earned arrived at by the sum of all the wages, profits, salaries, interest payments, shares, rents including commercial rents and other forms of earnings as well.’ Thus for salaried people, income refers to the total earnings whereas for organizations and companies income refers to the net profit.