How much do Americans make?

We’ve compiled a list of recent statistics to provide you with a better understanding of average salaries in the US, how they have changed over time, which factors are influencing worker compensation, and more.

Remember that salaries may vary widely from state to state and between urban and rural areas.

🔑 Key terms: average and median.

  • The average is calculated by adding up all of the values and dividing by the number of values.
  • The median is the point at which half the values are lower and half are higher.

An average can be heavily skewed by a few very high or very low values, so the median is usually a better overall guide.

Key Findings

  • The average salary of a full-time worker in the US amounts to $76,554 per year.
  • The median wage is $56,473.
  • Full-time working women earned an average of $65,831 in 2021, 77.8% of what men earned in the same year.
  • The average salary by state ranges from $42,700 in Mississippi to $98,370 in the District of Columbia.
  • Graduates with advanced degrees at full-time jobs earn, on average, 2.6x more than full-time workers who didn’t graduate high school.
  • Only 2 major occupational groups (management and legal) let full-time workers earn an annual median wage of over $100,000.

Average Salary in the US by Year

Americans with full-time jobs who work 50 weeks or more in a year make $76,554 per year on average[1].

The median annual earnings of full-time workers in the US amounted to $56,473 across all occupations and states.

Hourly Wage in the US by Year

The average hourly wage in the US is $27.07 ($58,260 in annual average wage)[2].

The median hourly wage across all occupations and all states is $22.00/hour.

Average Salary by Gender

In 2021, the average salary for American women was $65,831. That’s 77.8% of what men earned on average in the same timeframe ($84,600)[1].

Average Salary by Race

Asian workers tend to make more than any other race – $94,759 on average, followed by White ($77,396) and Black ($60,652) communities[1].

Average Salary by State

The annual average wage by state ranges from $42,700 in Mississippi to $98,370 in the District of Columbia.

Across 50 states and the District of Columbia, only 13 states had an annual average wage above $60,000. States with the highest annual average wage include Massachusetts ($72,940), New York ($70,460), Washington ($68,740), and California ($68,510)[3].

Average hourly wage by state
Median hourly wage by state
Annual average wage 

Average Salary by Age

Adults in their late 30-40s make the most compared to other age groups.

Younger adults (16 to 19 years) with full-time jobs have the lowest median weekly earnings – $623[4].

Median weekly earnings by age
Median annual earnings by age

(estimated 52 weeks) 

Average Salary by Education Level

In Q4 2022, the highest median weekly earnings were among graduates with advanced degrees ($1,761), 2.6x higher than among full-time workers who did not graduate high school ($675)[4].

Here’s complete data with the median earnings of full-time workers in the US by educational attainment:

Median weekly earnings by education level
Median annual earning by education level

(estimated, 52 weeks) 

Average Salary by Occupation

Top earners, ranked by annual average wage, work in management ($123,370), legal ($113,100), and computer and mathematical occupations ($99,860)[5].

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