Salary Structure

Salary structure of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

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Joining the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is a dream come true for many finance and legal enthusiasts. Not only does it offer a chance to work on high-stakes issues, but the pay isn’t too shabby either! Let’s dive into what you can expect to earn at different stages of your SEC career.

Starting Out: Entry-Level Salaries

Just starting your journey? As a fresh-faced analyst or attorney, you can expect to earn between $52,000 and $60,000 per year. Your exact salary will depend on factors like where you’re based, your education level, and your specific role. Jobs like Staff Accountant or Staff Attorney fall into this category. While it may not seem like a fortune, the experience you gain and the perks of government benefits set you up nicely for future success.

Climbing the Ladder: Mid-Level Salaries

Got a few years of SEC experience? Congratulations! Your paycheck is about to get a nice boost. Mid-level roles, such as Senior Accountant or Attorney, can fetch you between $75,000 and $95,000 annually. And that’s not all – bonuses and performance-based incentives can bump up your earnings even more. As you specialize in areas like financial analysis or corporate disclosure, you’ll find your earning potential continues to grow.

 Reaching the Top: Senior-Level Salaries

Reaching senior positions means you’ve truly mastered your craft. Whether you’re a Branch Chief, Division Director, or General Counsel, you can anticipate a hefty salary ranging from $120,000 to $180,000 per year. Exceptional performers in crucial roles can even surpass the $200,000 mark. Here, your leadership skills, track record, and influence within the SEC become key factors in determining your pay.

The Elite: Executive Salaries

At the very top of the SEC hierarchy are the executives, including the Commissioners and the Chair of the Commission. Commissioners earn a fixed salary of $184,500 annually. However, the Chair of the Commission takes home a higher salary of $221,400, reflecting the weighty responsibility of leading the nation’s financial watchdog.


Working at the SEC offers not just prestige but also competitive salaries that reward expertise and experience. Whether you’re just starting out or aiming for an executive role, the SEC provides a solid platform for career growth and financial stability.


1. Are there opportunities for bonuses at the SEC?

Absolutely! Mid-level and senior-level employees often receive bonuses and performance-based incentives on top of their base salaries.

2. Do SEC salaries vary by location?

Yes, salaries can differ based on where you’re located. Generally, higher living cost areas may offer slightly higher salaries.

3. How important is specialization for salary growth at the SEC?

Specializing in areas like financial analysis or enforcement can significantly boost your earning potential as you climb the career ladder at the SEC.

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