Prospective employees always have a list of what they’re look for in a job — and what the job pays is usually at the top of that list. This is especially the case in states with a high and ever-increasing cost of living.
Researchers at Self, a credit building company, ranked states and metro areas with the highest wages for new hires in 2020. New Jersey ranked 10th, with $3,376 per month (adjusted for the cost of living). Nationwide, new hires earned an average of $3,266 monthly in 2020, according to U.S. Census Bureau data although that figure varied widely by industry, job and location. New hires in Washington state and Massachusetts earned the most in 2020, at $4,045 and $3,793 per month respectively, adjusted for the cost of living.
The Trenton-Princeton metro area ranked second in midsize metro areas offering the highest wages. New hires in 2020 earned an average of cost-of-living-adjusted $4,341 per month.
There was a great disparity in average earnings by sector: New hires in the information sector — for jobs like computer programming — were paid the most, at $7,060 per month or nearly $85,000 annually. New employees in the mining, oil and gas, and utilities sectors also commanded strong wages. But new hires in the accommodation and food services sectors, which historically have the lowest average wages, came in at $1,458 per month or about $17,500 annually.