# When a 401k plan cites a percentage of salary, e.g. for matching, is it pre-tax, or post?

Referring to How 401(k) plans work:

What does "pre-tax" really mean?

Let's do the math to see the advantage of pre-tax saving. For example, you may decide you want to put \$200 into your account each month. Assume that, prior to starting your 401(k), you were bringing home \$2,000 per month pre-tax, and \$1,440 post-tax (paying \$560 in tax for a 28-percent tax bracket). Because the \$200 comes out pre-tax, that means you are taxed on \$1,800 (paying \$504 in tax), so your post-tax income is \$1,296. In other words, you are paying \$200 into your 401(k), but your take-home pay only goes down by \$144. You just saved \$56 per month!

What I was trying to find out is whether the percentage matched by my employer is before tax or after tax?

Let's say I was told by HR that they match 100% up to 5%. Using the salary example from above, would that be 5% of \$2,000 or 5% of \$1,440 that gets matched?