December 6, 2021

10 Cities Where Starting Pay In Public Accounting Will Be the Highest In 2022

The Powers That Be want me to squeeze every last bit of juice from the bountiful fruit that is the public accounting portion of the 2022 Robert Half Accounting & Finance Salary Guide. ICYMI, we’ve written about the projected starting salaries for each of the 10 public accounting jobs in the 2022 salary guide by professional experience, and how those salaries compare to those expected to be offered next year in five high cost of living cities, eight medium cost of living cities, and eight low cost of living cities.

Today we’re going to look at which of the top 200 US cities by population are expected to offer capital market servants a starting salary in 2022 that is WAY bigger than the national average in public accounting. The 200 cities are based on this list by World Population Review and ranges from New York City at No. 1 to Waco, TX at No. 200.

Using the location tool offered by Robert Half, I put in the names of each of the 200 largest cities to find out which ones had notable starting salary discrepancies—both good and bad—compared to the national average.

The data below from Bob shows the national average -> the average starting salary for that city by percentile per position. There are three salary percentiles:

  • 25th percentile: New to the type of role, still acquiring relevant skills.
  • 50th percentile: Average experience, has most of the necessary skills.
  • 75th percentile: Above-average experience, has all needed skills.

Of the 10 cities projected to have the largest starting salaries in public accounting next year, seven are on the West Coast (six in California) and three are on the East Coast:

1. San Francisco

Salaries in San Francisco are 42% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $162,590
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $200,930
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $241,400

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $128,865
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $156,200
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $181,760

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $88,750
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $107,210
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $124,250

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $70,645
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $87,330
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $100,465

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $58,220
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $71,355
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $84,490

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $160,460
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $198,445
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $230,040

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $109,340
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $136,675
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $156,555

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $78,100
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $97,625
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $111,825

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $65,320
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $80,585
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $91,590

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $58,220
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $71,710
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $82,360

2. San Jose, CA

Salaries in San Jose are 41% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $161,445
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $199,515
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $239,700

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $127,958
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $155,100
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $180,480

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $88,125
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $106,455
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $123,375

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $70,148
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $86,715
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $99,758

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $57,810
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $70,853
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $83,895

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $159,330
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $197,048
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $228,420

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $108,570
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $135,713
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $155,453

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $77,550
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $96,938
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $111,038

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $64,860
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $80,018
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $90,945

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $57,810
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $71,205
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $81,780

3. New York City

Salaries in New York City are 40.5% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $160,873
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $198,808
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $238,850

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $127,504
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $154,550
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $179,840

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $87,813
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $106,078
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $122,938

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $69,899
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $86,408
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $99,404

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $57,605
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $70,601
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $83,598

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $158,765
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $196,349
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $227,610

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $108,185
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $135,231
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $154,901

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $77,275
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $96,594
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $110,644

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $64,630
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $79,734
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $90,623

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $57,605
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $70,953
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $81,490

4. Oakland

Salaries in Oakland are 35% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $154,575
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $191,025
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $229,500

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $122,513
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $148,500
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $172,800

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $84,375
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $101,925
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $118,125

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $67,163
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $83,025
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $95,513

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $55,350
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $67,838
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $80,325

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $152,550
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $188,663
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $218,700

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $103,950
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $129,938
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $148,838

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $74,250
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $92,813
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $106,313

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $62,100
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $76,613
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $87,075

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $55,350
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $68,175
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $78,300

5. Boston

Salaries in Boston are 34% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $153,430
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $189,610
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $227,800

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $121,605
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $147,400
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $171,520

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $83,750
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $101,170
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $117,250

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $66,665
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $82,410
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $94,805

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $54,940
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $67,335
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $79,730

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $151,420
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $187,265
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $217,080

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $103,180
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $128,975
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $147,735

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $73,700
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $92,125
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $105,525

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $61,640
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $76,045
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $86,430

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $54,940
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $67,670
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $77,720

6. Los Angeles
7. Washington, DC

Salaries in Los Angeles and Washington, DC are 33% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $152,285
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $188,195
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $226,100

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $120,698
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $146,300
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $170,240

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $83,125
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $100,415
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $116,375

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $66,168
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $81,795
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $94,098

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $54,530
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $66,833
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $79,135

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $150,290
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $185,868
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $215,460

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $102,410
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $128,013
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $146,633

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $73,150
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $91,438
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $104,738

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $61,180
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $75,478
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $85,785

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $54,530
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $67,165
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $77,140

8. Irvine, CA

Salaries in Irvine are 30% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $148,850
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $183,950
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $221,000

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $117,975
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $143,000
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $166,400

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $81,250
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $98,150
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $113,750

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $64,675
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $79,950
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $91,975

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $53,300
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $65,325
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $77,350

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $146,900
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $181,675
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $210,600

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $100,100
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $125,125
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $143,325

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $71,500
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $89,375
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $102,375

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $59,800
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $73,775
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $83,850

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $53,300
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $65,650
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $75,400

9. San Diego
10. Seattle

Salaries in San Diego and Seattle are 29% higher than the national average.

Senior manager/director tax services

  • 25th percentile: $114,500 -> $147,705
  • 50th percentile: $141,500 -> $182,535
  • 75th percentile: $170,000 -> $219,300

Manager of tax services

  • 25th percentile: $90,750 -> $117,068
  • 50th percentile: $110,000 -> $141,900
  • 75th percentile: $128,000 -> $165,120

Senior tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $62,500 -> $80,625
  • 50th percentile: $75,500 -> $97,395
  • 75th percentile: $87,500 -> $112,875

Tax accountant, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $49,750 -> $64,178
  • 50th percentile: $61,500 -> $79,335
  • 75th percentile: $70,750 -> $91,268

Entry-level tax accountant

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $52,890
  • 50th percentile: $50,250 -> $64,823
  • 75th percentile: $59,500 -> $76,755

Senior manager/director audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $113,000 -> $145,770
  • 50th percentile: $139,750 -> $180,278
  • 75th percentile: $162,000 -> $208,980

Manager audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $77,000 -> $99,330
  • 50th percentile: $96,250 -> $124,163
  • 75th percentile: $110,250 -> $142,223

Senior audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $55,000 -> $70,950
  • 50th percentile: $68,750 -> $88,688
  • 75th percentile: $78,750 -> $101,588

Audit and assurance services, 1-3 years’ experience

  • 25th percentile: $46,000 -> $59,340
  • 50th percentile: $56,750 -> $73,208
  • 75th percentile: $64,500 -> $83,205

Entry-level audit and assurance services

  • 25th percentile: $41,000 -> $52,890
  • 50th percentile: $50,500 -> $65,145
  • 75th percentile: $58,000 -> $74,820

Honorable mentions

  • Chicago: 24%
  • Santa Rosa, CA: 22%
  • Ontario, CA: 20%
  • Riverside, CA: 20%
  • Phoenix: 18%
  • Naperville, IL: 15%
  • Philadelphia: 15%
  • Salt Lake City: 13%
  • Austin, TX: 11%
  • Dallas: 11%
  • Denver: 11%
  • Portland, OR: 11%
  • Sacramento, CA: 11%
  • Houston: 10.5%
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL: 10%
  • Fort Worth, TX: 10%
  • Miami: 10%

Tomorrow we’ll look at 10 cities among the 200 largest that are projected to offer starting salaries in public accounting that are well below average in 2022.

Related articles:

How Are Public Accounting Salaries Stacking Up For 2022?
2022 Projected Public Accounting Salaries In Five HCOL Cities
2022 Projected Public Accounting Salaries In Eight MCOL Cities
2022 Projected Public Accounting Salaries In Eight LCOL Cities

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