Careers in finance have consistently ranked among the most sought-after professions worldwide. The finance industry is exceptionally diverse, spanning traditional banking, investment management, and everything in between, offering a vast array of career options.
In this article, we will explore the highest-paying finance jobs, helping you make an informed decision on your next career move.
30 Highest Paying Finance Jobs
Before we dive into our list, it’s crucial to understand how we picked the highest-paying finance jobs. So, what makes a job worthy of being on our highest-paying list?
Let’s break down our criteria:
- Average Salary: To ensure that we feature finance jobs with good income, we’ve turned to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Our focus has been on job roles that consistently offer salaries above the annual median wage, which stands at $76,850.
- Skills Required: We’ve factored in the demand for specific skills that impact compensation packages, emphasizing roles where these sought-after skills can lead to more lucrative pay packages.
With these criteria as our base, here are the 30 highest-paying finance jobs.
High-Level Corporate Finance
High-level corporate finance refers to the strategic management of a company’s financial resources and decision-making processes at the executive level.
1. Chief Financial Officer
The role of Chief Financial Officer (CFO) stands as an eminent goal for many finance professionals. CFOs hold a paramount position in high-level corporate finance, steering the financial strategy and management of an organization.
- Primary Duties: CFOs oversee the financial activities of the company, including financial planning, budgeting, and forecasting. They manage financial risks, ensure compliance with financial regulations, and are responsible for financial stewardship management.
- Skills Required: A deep understanding of financial principles, risk management, and financial regulations. Strong leadership, strategic thinking, and decision-making abilities are important.
- Average Salary: Chief Financial Officers are among the highest-paid professionals in corporate finance. The median annual salary for a CFO is $230,345.
2. Chief Compliance Officer
Chief Compliance Officers (CCOs) are responsible for ensuring that an organization adheres to all relevant laws and regulations, maintaining ethical standards, and mitigating legal risks.
- Primary Duties: CCOs develop, implement, and oversee compliance programs that address regulatory requirements. They conduct compliance audits, investigate potential violations, and collaborate with various departments to ensure all processes align with legal and ethical standards.
- Skills Required: In-depth knowledge of regulatory compliance and a keen eye for detail. The ability to interpret complex legal information and effectively communicate compliance requirements to employees at all levels. Strong analytical, communication, and problem-solving skills are a must.
- Average Salary: Chief Compliance Officers typically earn an average annual salary of $158,517.
3. Corporate Treasurer
Corporate Treasurers hold a pivotal role in managing an organization’s financial resources. They are responsible for optimizing cash flow, managing investments, and ensuring the financial stability of the company.
- Primary Duties: Corporate Treasurers manage the company’s liquidity, oversee investments, and develop financial strategies to minimize risk. They maintain relationships with banks and financial institutions, negotiate credit and financing agreements, and play a critical role in the company’s capital structure.
- Skills Required: Possess a strong understanding of financial markets, risk management, and financial instruments. Excellent analytical, negotiation, and communication skills are vital.
- Average Salary: Corporate Treasurers earn an annual income ranging between $107,423 and $129,708.
In the world of corporate finance, the role of a Comptroller is a key position. These professionals are responsible for overseeing an organization’s financial operations, accounting, and reporting.
- Primary Duties: Comptrollers manage financial records, prepare financial reports, and ensure the accuracy of financial data. They oversee the accounting department, manage budgeting and financial planning, and play a significant role in the financial decision-making process.
- Skills Required: A strong background in accounting and finance, attention to detail, and the ability to interpret and communicate complex financial information. Excellent leadership, problem-solving, and decision-making skills are essential.
- Average Salary: Comptrollers earn a median annual salary of $117,990.
Investment banking is a pivotal sector within the financial industry that specializes in helping corporations, governments, and other institutions raise capital, make strategic financial decisions, and manage complex financial transactions.
5. Portfolio Manager
Portfolio Managers are entrusted with the management and growth of investment portfolios on behalf of individuals, institutions, or mutual funds.
- Primary Duties: Portfolio Managers select and oversee investment assets, make buy/sell decisions, and conduct in-depth research and analysis to maximize returns while mitigating risks.
- Skills Required: Strong analytical skills, a deep understanding of financial markets, and the ability to make informed investment decisions. Exceptional research, risk assessment, and asset allocation capabilities are crucial.
- Average Salary: Portfolio Managers typically earn a professional annual salary of $144,141.
6. Investment Banker
If you’re seeking a dynamic and high-paying career in finance, Investment Banking is your pathway to success. Investment Bankers play a central role in corporate finance, facilitating mergers, acquisitions, and raising capital.
- Primary Duties: Investment Bankers structure and execute financial transactions, such as mergers, acquisitions, and initial public offerings. They offer financial advice to clients, analyze market trends, and build and maintain relationships with them.
- Skills Required: Strong analytical and problem-solving skills, exceptional communication and presentation abilities, and the capability to work under pressure and meet tight deadlines.
- Average Salary: Investment Bankers can typically expect an annual base salary progressing from $175,000 to $225,000.
7. Investment Advisor
For those who are passionate about finance and enjoy helping individuals or institutions make informed investment decisions, the role of an Investment Advisor could be a perfect fit for you.
- Primary Duties: Investment Advisors provide tailored investment strategies and recommendations to clients, considering their financial goals and risk tolerance. They monitor market trends, evaluate investment opportunities, and provide ongoing advice to help clients achieve their financial objectives.
- Skills Required: Strong analytical skills, a deep understanding of financial markets, and excellent communication and interpersonal abilities. The capacity to build trust with clients, manage investment portfolios, and adapt to market changes is crucial.
- Average Salary: Investment Advisors earn a median salary of $94,170.
8. Asset Manager
Asset Managers play a key role in overseeing and growing the investments held by clients, including individuals, institutions, and investment funds.
- Primary Duties: Asset Managers optimize investment portfolios, make asset allocation decisions, and conduct research to identify investment opportunities. They maximize returns while mitigating risks and ensuring that clients’ financial goals are met.
- Skills Required: A comprehensive understanding of financial markets, and excellent communication and client relationship management capabilities. The ability to adapt to market changes and make informed investment decisions.
- Average Salary: Asset Managers earn a median annual salary of $85,814.
Hedge Fund Management
Hedge fund management is a specialized area within the financial industry that involves the operation and oversight of hedge funds. These funds are investment vehicles typically open to accredited investors and employ various strategies to generate returns for their clients.
9. Hedge Fund Manager
The role of a Hedge Fund Manager is both prestigious and financially rewarding. Hedge Fund Managers are responsible for overseeing and managing investment portfolios with the goal of delivering substantial returns for their clients and investors.
- Primary Duties: Hedge Fund Managers develop investment strategies, make buy and sell decisions, and monitor portfolio performance. They engage in extensive financial research and analysis, often using a wide range of investment techniques to maximize returns while managing risk.
- Skills Required: A deep understanding of financial markets, trading strategies, and risk management. Exceptional analytical, decision-making, and communication skills are crucial.
- Average Salary: Hedge Fund Managers earn an average annual salary of $145,816 but they have the potential for exceptional earnings, as their compensation often includes a percentage of the fund’s profits.
10. Hedge Fund Analyst
Hedge Fund Analysts are essential members of the investment team, responsible for conducting in-depth financial research and analysis to support the decision-making process of Hedge Fund Managers.
- Primary Duties: Hedge Fund Analysts evaluate investment opportunities, analyze financial data, and identify trends and market opportunities. They contribute to the development of investment strategies, monitor portfolio performance, and provide recommendations to enhance returns and manage risk.
- Skills Required: Analytical and research skills, proficiency in financial modeling, and a deep understanding of financial markets. Effective communication and the ability to work collaboratively in a fast-paced environment.
- Average Salary: Hedge Fund Analysts typically earn an average annual salary of $132,579.
Private equity is a form of investment that involves investing in private companies or taking public companies private. It’s characterized by funds, known as private equity firms, pooling money from various investors to acquire, invest in, or provide financing for companies.
11. Private Equity Associate
Private Equity Associates are key players in the world of alternative investments, focusing on acquiring and managing equity stakes in private companies.
- Primary Duties: Private Equity Associates conducting due diligence on potential investments, financial modeling, and deal structuring. They work closely with senior team members to source investment opportunities and assess their potential.
- Skills Required: Financial analysis, modeling, and valuation skills. Be well-versed in the intricacies of mergers and acquisitions, and possess strong communication and teamwork abilities.
- Average Salary: Private Equity Associates earn competitive salaries, with annual incomes ranging from $135,000 to $155,000.
12. Private Equity Analyst
Private Equity Analysts provide valuable support to the Private Equity team in evaluating, acquiring, and managing private company investments.
- Primary Duties: Private Equity Analysts conduct research, financial analysis, and due diligence on potential investments. They assist in preparing investment memos, financial models, and investment proposals.
- Skills Required: Possess strong financial analysis and modeling skills, as well as an understanding of the private equity industry. Must be detail-oriented, capable of working in a team, and skilled in communication and presentation.
- Average Salary: Private Equity Analysts earn a median annual salary of $91,305.
Financial Planning and Advising
Financial planning and advising are integral components of the finance industry, aimed at helping individuals and businesses achieve their financial objectives.
13. Chartered Financial Analyst
Becoming a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) represents a significant milestone for those passionate about investment and financial analysis.
- Primary Duties: Chartered Financial Analysts conduct financial research, analyze market trends, and evaluate investment opportunities. They manage investment portfolios, recommend investment strategies, and assess risk.
- Skills Required: A deep understanding of financial markets, investment analysis, and portfolio management. Strong analytical, quantitative, and critical-thinking skills are crucial.
- Average Salary: Chartered Financial Analysts earn an average annual salary of $103,000.
14. Financial Risk Manager
For those who thrive on assessing and mitigating financial risks, a career as a Financial Risk Manager (FRM) offers a challenging and rewarding path. FRMs are experts in identifying, measuring, and managing risks within the financial industry.
- Primary Duties: FRMs evaluate market risk, credit risk, and operational risk, and work with financial institutions, corporations, or government agencies to ensure sound risk management practices.
- Skills Required: Strong understanding of risk management principles, financial modeling, and statistical analysis. Critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills are essential.
- Average Salary: Financial Risk Managers often earn a competitive professional income, with an annual salary that ranges between $91,877 and $118,886.
15. Financial Manager
Financial Managers play a vital role in an organization’s financial health, overseeing financial operations, budgeting, and financial reporting.
- Primary Duties: Financial Managers develop financial strategies, and manage budgets, and financial planning. They oversee financial records, prepare financial reports, and ensure the organization complies with financial regulations.
- Skills Required: Strong background in finance and accounting, attention to detail, and the ability to interpret and communicate complex financial information.
- Average Salary: Financial Managers earn an average base salary of $107,856.
16. Financial Advisor
Financial Advisors are vital professionals in the finance industry who guide individuals and businesses in making informed financial decisions. They provide personalized financial planning, investment advice, and risk management strategies to help clients achieve their financial goals.
- Primary Duties: Financial Advisors work closely with clients to assess their financial situation, develop financial goals, and create customized financial plans. They provide recommendations for investment portfolios, retirement planning, estate planning, and risk management.
- Skills Required: Strong financial analysis and communication skills are vital for Financial Advisors. A deep understanding of investment products, financial planning, and regulatory compliance.
- Average Salary: Financial Advisors earn a median annual wage of $94,170.
17. Financial Analyst
For those captivated by the world of finance, the role of a Financial Analyst offers both a rewarding career and a significant role in shaping financial decisions.
- Primary Duties: Financial Analysts analyze financial data and market trends to make investment recommendations, prepare financial reports and presentations for clients or management, and evaluate the financial health and performance of companies.
- Skills Required: Strong analytical and quantitative skills, proficiency in financial software and data analysis tools, excellent communication and presentation abilities.
- Average Salary: Financial Analysts earn a median annual salary of $84,080.
Commercial banking is the backbone of the financial industry, where banks offer a wide array of services to businesses, from lending and cash management to financial advisory and credit services. These banks serve as essential intermediaries, connecting companies with the financial resources they need to grow and thrive.
18. Commercial Banker
If you are interested in the banking industry, specializing in serving the financial needs of businesses, consider a career as a commercial banker.
- Primary Duties: Commercial bankers manage business loan portfolios, analyze credit risk, and recommend lending options. They work with business clients to understand their financial goals and provide tailored solutions.
- Skills Required: Understand various business industries, financial products, and lending regulations. Strong financial analysis and relationship-building skills are crucial for Commercial Bankers.
- Average Salary: Commercial Bankers can earn an annual salary ranging from $86,115 to $115,683.
19. Credit Analyst
Being a Credit Analyst means you get to evaluate the creditworthiness of individuals and businesses seeking loans.
- Primary Duties: Credit Analysts analyze the financial information of loan applicants, including income statements, credit reports, and business financials. They assess the risk associated with lending and provide recommendations to underwriters or loan officers.
- Skills Required: Solid analytical and financial modeling skills are essential. Credit Analysts need a deep understanding of lending products, credit evaluation, and financial statement analysis.
- Average Salary: Credit Analysts earn an annual average salary that falls between $40,000 and $93,000.
20. Loan Officer
- Primary Duties: Work with clients to assess their financial needs and provide guidance on loan options. Review and verify loan applications, evaluate creditworthiness, and determine the terms and conditions of loans.
- Skills Required: They need to understand lending products, credit evaluation, and financial regulations. Effective relationship-building skills and the ability to work with clients to find suitable loan solutions are important.
- Average Salary: On average, Loan Officers earn an annual salary of $63,380.
21. Branch Manager
If you enjoy day-to-day operations in the banking and financial sector, consider a career as a Branch Manager. These individuals oversee staff, manage customer relationships, and ensure the branch meets its financial and operational goals.
- Primary Duties: Branch Managers manage and mentor staff, ensure the delivery of exceptional customer service, and oversee all branch operations, including sales, lending, and compliance.
- Skills Required: Strong leadership and organizational skills are essential. Branch Managers also need a deep understanding of banking products and services, as well as knowledge of industry regulations.
- Average Salary: The average annual salary for Branch Managers is $86,455.
Entry-Level Jobs in Finance
The finance journey often begins with entry-level roles that lay the foundation for a promising career trajectory. The diverse entry-level jobs in finance, from financial analysts to junior accountants, offer a glimpse into the essential roles that help you build the financial world’s future.
22. Real Estate Analyst
Real Estate Analysts play a crucial role in the real estate industry by conducting in-depth research and analysis to inform property investments, development projects, and property management decisions.
- Primary Duties: Real Estate Analysts collect and analyze data related to property values, market conditions, and investment opportunities. They prepare financial models, conduct risk assessments, and make recommendations for property acquisition, development, and management.
- Skills Required: Analytical and financial modeling skills. A deep understanding of real estate markets, property valuation, and financial analysis is essential.
- Average Salary: Real Estate Analysts can expect to earn an average professional income of $80,000 annually.
23. Relationship Banker
Relationship Bankers are key figures in the banking industry, serving as the bridge between the financial institution and its customers.
- Primary Duties: Relationship bankers provide personalized financial advice, help with account management, and assist with the selection of appropriate banking products.
- Skills Required: Strong interpersonal and communication skills. Relationship Bankers must have a deep understanding of various banking products and services. Sales and customer service skills are also important for building and retaining a client base.
- Average Salary: Relationship Bankers earn an average annual professional salary of $45,000.
24. Audit Associate
An Audit Associate is an entry-level position in the field of accounting and auditing. These professionals play a crucial role in examining financial records, verifying compliance with regulations, and ensuring the accuracy of financial statements.
- Primary Duties: Audit Associates conduct financial audits for clients, examining financial statements, internal controls, and compliance with accounting standards and regulations. They contribute to the development of audit plans and perform substantive testing.
- Skills Required: Solid analytical and problem-solving skills are vital. Audit Associates must also possess a deep understanding of financial principles, accounting standards, and auditing procedures.
- Average Salary: On average, Audit Associates earn a professional income of $69,269 per year.
25. Insurance Sales Agent
Insurance Sales Agents are essential in the insurance industry, as they connect individuals and businesses with the right insurance policies to protect their assets and manage risk.
- Primary Duties: Insurance Sales Agents work to understand the insurance needs of their clients and recommend appropriate coverage options. They explain policy details, provide quotes, and facilitate the purchase of insurance.
- Skills Required: Strong communication and sales skills are important as well as an understanding of various insurance products, underwriting guidelines, and regulations.
- Average Salary: Insurance Sales Agents earn an average annual salary of $55,537.
26. Retail Bank Teller
If you are passionate about providing crucial customer service and facilitating routine financial transactions for individuals and small businesses, you should consider a career as a Retail Bank Teller.
- Primary Duties: Retail Bank Tellers handle various customer transactions, such as deposits, withdrawals, check cashing, and assisting with account inquiries. They ensure accuracy in these transactions, promote banking products and services, and help resolve customer issues.
- Skills Required: Strong interpersonal and customer service skills are essential for Retail Bank Tellers. Accuracy and attention to detail are also crucial in this role.
- Average Salary: On average, Retail Bank Tellers’ professional salaries range from $27,300 to $40,017 per year.
Emerging Finance Fields with High Salary Potential
New and exciting opportunities are emerging, promising not just financial rewards but also a chance to be at the forefront of groundbreaking financial trends.
27. Real Estate Tech (PropTech)
Real Estate Tech, often referred to as PropTech, represents a dynamic intersection between real estate and technology. Professionals in this field provide digital innovations and solutions that are transforming the way we buy, sell, manage, and interact with real estate properties.
- Primary Duties: Identifying and implementing technological solutions that streamline real estate processes. Develop platforms for property listings, property management software, or innovative tools for real estate investment analysis.
- Skills Required: Success in this role demands a deep understanding of both real estate and technology. Innovators need to be proficient in data analytics, market trends, and software development.
- Average Salary: The income of Real Estate Technology Innovators varies based on the success of their innovations, but their professional salary is estimated at $85,977.
FinTech professionals are the innovators and experts at the intersection of finance and technology. These individuals shape the future of banking, investment, payments, and other financial sectors through digital innovation, making financial services more accessible, efficient, and secure for businesses and consumers alike.
- Primary Duties: FinTech Product Managers define the vision and strategy for financial products, such as mobile banking apps, investment platforms, or peer-to-peer payment systems.
- Skills Required: Be adept in market analysis, product design, and agile development methodologies. Strong communication skills are vital to collaborate with engineers, designers, and other stakeholders.
- Average Salary: FinTech Product Managers can expect to earn an average annual salary of $132,792.
Those interested in contributing to the transformative wave of the insurance industry can become InsurTech specialists. InsurTech is reshaping the insurance landscape, making it more customer-centric, efficient, and responsive to the evolving needs of policyholders in the digital age.
- Primary Duties: InsurTech Specialists develop and implement technology-driven solutions to improve the efficiency of insurance operations. They work on data analytics, automated underwriting, and customer-facing technologies that enhance the overall insurance experience.
- Skills Required: A strong grasp of both the insurance industry and emerging technologies. InsurTech Specialists must be adept in data science, and artificial intelligence and have a deep understanding of regulatory compliance in the insurance sector.
- Average Salary: On average, InsurTech Specialists can make a professional income of $51,667 annually.
Neo-Bank Executives are at the forefront of a transformative banking landscape. These professionals drive innovation and lead digital-only financial institutions, commonly known as Neo-Banks, which offer customers an entirely online banking experience.
- Primary Duties: Neo-Bank executives set up the strategic direction of the Neo-Bank, and make critical decisions on product offerings, user experience, and technology integration.
- Skills Required: Strong leadership, and a deep understanding of fintech trends, and digital banking technologies are crucial.
- Average Salary: The average Neo Financial salary ranges from approximately $35,713 per year for a Customer Specialist to $194,029 per year for a Development Director. Average Neo Financial hourly pay ranges from approximately $15.00 per hour for an Ambassador to $20.00 per hour for a Student Leader.
Is a Career in Finance for You?
A career in finance can be rewarding, thanks to the impressive earning potential, job stability, and the chance to develop valuable skills while charting a path for career growth. However, it’s not all smooth sailing; the long working hours, the stress levels in certain finance roles, and the competitive nature of the industry can be demanding.
Here are some benefits of working in finance:
- Lucrative Compensation: Finance jobs often come with high base salaries, attractive commission structures, and substantial performance bonuses.
- Job Stability: The finance sector tends to be more resilient during economic downturns, providing job security.
- Diverse Career Paths: From investment banking to financial planning, there’s a finance niche for a wide range of interests and skills.
- Career Advancement: The finance industry often promotes from within, offering a clear path for career progression.
- High Demand: Skilled finance professionals are consistently in demand, making it easier to find job opportunities.
- Networking: The industry allows building extensive networks with colleagues, clients, and business partners.