How Much Do Economists Make in 2021 (including Starting Salary)

Stan T.Career, SalaryLeave a Comment

Annual Salary, Salary Range, and Highest Paying States and Industries


Economists conduct research, prepare reports, or formulate plans to address economic problems related to the production and distribution of goods and services or monetary and fiscal policy. May collect and process economic and statistical data using sampling techniques and econometric methods.

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Table of contents
  1. Average salary
  2. Starting salary
  3. Salary rank
  4. Salary range
  5. Highest paying states
  6. Highest paying industries

Average salary

Annual salary
$120880 per year
Hourly wage
$58 per hour

Starting salary

Entry-level annual salary
$59,220 to $79,860 per year
Entry-level hourly wage
$28 to $38 per hour

Entry-level Economists with little to no experience can expect to make anywhere between $59,220 to $79,860 per year or $28 to $38 per hour. Similar to any other job, their salary will increase as they gain experience.

Salary rank

Salary rank

We wanted to make it easy for our readers to compare the salary of Economists to all the other careers out there. So we created Salary Rank. We compared the salary of all careers then we gave them a rank of A, B, C, or D depending on where their average salary sit in comparison to other careers.

Salary range

Level Hourly Annual
Highest (Top 10%) $95 $198,230
Senior (Top 25%) $73 $151,210
Middle (Mid 50%) $52 $108,350
Junior (Bottom 25%) $38 $79,860
No experience (Bottom 10%) $28 $59,220

Highest paying states

State Hourly Annual
NY $72 $150,160
DC $69 $144,110
CA $63 $131,500
MD $61 $126,960
VT $57 $118,230
AL $57 $117,740
IL $55 $115,280
MA $54 $111,550
LA $53 $109,410
WA $52 $108,830

Another simple way to increase your salary as an Economist is to move to a higher paying state. However moving to a higher paying state like NY doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the expenses at NY might be much higher than where you are currently living at right now.

According to BLS, the highest paid Economists are in the states of NY, DC, CA, MD and VT.

Highest paying industries

Salary by industry Annual Hourly
Legal Services $216960 $104.31
Monetary Authorities-Central Bank $156770 $75.37
Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services $143270 $68.88
Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting Services $136140 $65.45
Scientific Research and Development Services $132510 $63.71
Agencies, Brokerages, and Other Insurance Related Activities $131890 $63.41
Federal Executive Branch $128640 $61.85
Computer Systems Design and Related Services $123580 $59.41
Business, Professional, Labor, Political, and Similar Organizations $120450 $57.91
Social Advocacy Organizations $118780 $57.11
Grantmaking and Giving Services $114970 $55.28
Insurance Carriers $113710 $54.67
Management of Companies and Enterprises $113000 $54.33
Postal Service (Federal Government) $112880 $54.27
Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution $110940 $53.34
Natural Gas Distribution $110090 $52.93
Architectural, Engineering, and Related Services $106410 $51.16
Office Administrative Services $95600 $45.96
Employment Services $92320 $44.39
Local Government $87150 $41.90
Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools $85320 $41.02
State Government $75560 $36.33
Land Subdivision $63710 $30.63
Securities, Commodity Contracts, and Other Financial Investments and Related Activities $ $*

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