The highest earning jobs in Australia

Peter Terlato 29 November 2016

surgeon

Doctors dominate the list of well-paid professions.

Surgeons, legal officials, finance executives, cricketers, traders and metallurgists are just a few of the vocations which enjoy significantly high incomes in Australia.

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has released its annual Taxation Statistics Report for 2012-13, which lists the 50 highest earning occupations for both men and women.

For men, neurosurgery is the most lucrative career, while judges are the highest paid female workers.

Top 50 average incomes

Male salaries

Vocation
Salary
Neurosurgeon
$577,674
Ophthalmologist
$552,947
Cardiologist
$453,253
Plastic and reconstructive surgeon
$448,530
Gynaecologist; Obstetrician
$446,507
Otorhinolaryngologist
$445,939
Orthopaedic surgeon
$439,629
Urologist
$433,792
Vascular surgeon
$417,524
Gastroenterologist
$415,192
Diagnostic and interventional radiologist
$386,003
Dermatologist
$383,880
Judge – law
$381,323
Anaesthetist
$370,492
Cardiothoracic surgeon
$358,043
Surgeon – general
$357,996
Specialist physicians – other
$344,860
Radiation oncologist
$336,994
Medical oncologist
$322,178
Securities and finance dealer
$320,452
Thoracic medicine specialist
$315,444
Specialist physician – general medicine
$315,114
Intensive care specialist
$308,033
Renal medicine specialist
$298,681
Neurologist
$298,543
Financial investment manager
$288,790
Investment broker
$286,530
Paediatric surgeon
$282,508
Clinical haematologist
$271,738
Futures trader
$264,830
Endocrinologist
$258,972
Cricketer
$257,527
Rheumatologist
$256,933
Dental specialist
$253,442
Magistrate
$246,737
Equities analyst; Investment dealer
$245,826
Paediatrician
$239,405
Stock exchange dealer Stockbroker
$238,192
Psychiatrist
$234,557
Emergency medicine specialist
$232,595
Member of parliament
$232,093
Pathologist
$224,378
Company secretary – corporate governance
$218,432
State governor
$212,652
Actuary
$196,144
Sports physician
$187,468
Petroleum engineer
$185,808
General medical practitioner
$184,639
Chief executive officer; Executive director; Managing director; Public servant – secretary or deputy secretary
$181,849
Mining production manager
$179,439

Female salaries

VocationSalary
Judge – law$355,844
Neurosurgeon$323,682
Plastic and reconstructive surgeon$281,608
Futures trader$281,600
Vascular surgeon$271,529
Gynaecologist; Obstetrician$264,628
Gastroenterologist$260,925
Magistrate$260,161
Anaesthetist$243,582
Ophthalmologist$217,242
Cardiologist$215,920
Urologist$213,094
Surgeon – general$210,796
Medical oncologist$208,612
Specialist physicians – other$207,599
Specialist physician – general medicine$207,225
Otorhinolaryngologist$200,136
Dermatologist$195,030
Diagnostic and interventional radiologist$180,695
Cardiothoracic surgeon$175,500
Paediatric surgeon$175,314
Endocrinologist$174,542
Member of parliament$173,331
Rheumatologist$169,409
Intensive care specialist$169,369
Emergency medicine specialist$165,786
Orthopaedic surgeon$159,479
Neurologist$155,217
Renal medicine specialist$155,133
Psychiatrist$152,437
Clinical haematologist$147,970
Paediatrician$147,347
Securities and finance dealer$145,208
Dental specialist$140,505
Actuary$136,819
Radiation oncologist$135,678
Financial investment manager$134,481
Petroleum engineer$133,315
Mining production manager$133,061
General medical practitioner$129,834
Thoracic medicine specialist$127,645
Stockbroker$124,433
Paving plant operator$123,281
Mining engineer$119,564
Tribunal member$119,219
Occupational medicine specialist; Public health physician; Sports physician$118,310
Geophysicist$117,575
Chief executive officer; Executive director; Managing director; Public servant – secretary or deputy secretary$116,855
Engineering manager$116,732
Metallurgist$110,359

Earlier this month, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released its Wage Price Index (WPI) for September, revealing the greatest gains in annual wage growth were in health care and social assistance, up 2.4% year-on-year.

However, in a speech addressing monetary policy last month, Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) governor Philip Lowe said excess capacity, lower commodity prices and reduced pricing power had led to the slowest rate of wage increases since the late 1990s.

Wondering what degrees offer the best return on investment? The highest paid graduates, now working full-time, are employed in engineering and related technologies, and management and commerce.

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