U.S. employers added over half a million jobs in May of 2021. The unemployment rate declined from 6.1% the month before to 5.8%, the lowest rate since the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Yet this growth was still slower than expected. Some employers said they are struggling to find workers, and economists have put forth one theory as to why — employers are not paying high enough wages.
As of 2020, the median annual wage in America was $41,950. Wages can vary significantly, based not just on the work done, but also on where it is being done. There are over a dozen U.S. cities in which the median annual wage is over $50,000.
To determine the cities with the highest paying jobs, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed data on median annual wages for 389 metropolitan statistical areas from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics program.
Nearly half of the metro areas on this list actually reported lower employment figures in 2020 than in 2015. This is largely attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic, in which millions of Americans lost their jobs.
Many of the metro areas with the highest paying jobs are known as hubs for specialized fields like technology, nuclear engineering, biochemistry, and more. In addition to paying relatively high wages, these jobs were largely insulated from the effects of the pandemic, allowing workers to continue earning high wages throughout 2020. These are the 25 highest paying jobs in America.
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