How much money is enough? That question may not be so difficult to answer, but what about the question of how much you are worth? Many people evaluate their self-worth by comparing themselves to other similar people within their age bracket; nobody likes to feel like they are at the bottom of the pile or are worth less than somebody else.
To get a sense of just how much you are worth, let’s take a closer look at some of the USA’s average salaries for full-time workers by age.
#1: Average Salaries for Younger Adults (18-34)
In the USA, earnings demographics are tracked by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Kicking off our evaluation of average salaries are the 16-19-year olds and, as you would expect, their average salary is significantly lower than all others. According to the BLS, the average salary for 16-19-year olds is $420 per week, or just shy of $22,000 per year.
By the time you reach your 20s, earnings increase slightly to $528 per week for 20-24-year olds (around $27,456 per year). When you get to your mid-twenties through to early-thirties, as an American, you should expect to earn around $758 per week or $39,416 each year. That is quite the jump from the average salary of somebody in their early twenties.
#2: Average Salaries for the Middle-Aged
When you get past the mid-point of your thirties, average salaries jump to around $950 per week ($49,000 each year) and then, at this point, salaries seem to peak and don’t increase by very much. For example, the average salary for those aged 45-54 is $962 per week ($50,024 per year) and then decreases for those aged 55-64, who, on average, earn $954 per week ($49,608 per year).
When you hit retirement (65 and over), on average, you should expect to be bringing in $888 per week ($46,176) if you are a full-time worker, of which there are over 4,000,000 in this age bracket throughout the USA.
#3: What Can Influence a Salary
There are many factors which can impact someone’s earnings or salary, either positively or negatively. Education level, where somebody is living, their race, gender, seniority, and experience all play roles in determining their worth.
It is not just physical and educational characteristics which influence salary either – job performance, years of service and how much your employer relies on you can all have massive effects on your basic salary.
These average salary statistics only take into account full-time workers; there are many Americans who are working part-time or are unemployed, and so these average salaries should be looked at with a little bit of skepticism. Age brackets are not the be-all end-all determiner of somebody’s earning potential – within each age bracket, people’s earnings are vastly different and are influenced by factors such as education level, gender, and race. Plus, some people earn money by means aside from full-time employment, too.
When push comes to shove, you are completely in control of your earning potential and you should do everything you possibly can to make yourself valuable to employers, so you can demand a higher rate of pay.