RN Salary in California - Nursing in "The Golden State"
California employs the highest number of registered nurses in the United States with approximately 240,030 RNs working here, according to May 2010 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale metropolitan division of California is the third largest metropolitan employer of RNs in the country with 64,630 registered nurses working in this area alone. All of the top ten highest-paying metropolitan areas for RNs are located in the state of California with the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara area, Oakland-Fremont-Hayward area and San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City areas filling out the top three spots. RNs can easily find employment and a competitive RN salary in California.
The average annual RN salary in California was $87,480 according to the BLS data from May, 2010. This makes California the highest-paying state in the nation for this occupation. California RNs with earnings in the top ten percent of their field earned more than $120,720. Those with earnings in the bottom ten percent of their field made less than $60,630 a year. It should be noted, however, that the cost of living in California is 37% higher than the U.S. average. As of November 2011, California's unemployment rate was the second-highest in the country at 11.3%, according to BLS data.
The top ten highest-paying metropolitan areas for RNs in the United States are all located in California. At the top of the list is the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara area. Here, RNs earn an average salary of $116,150. This is likely related to the high cost of living here as much as any other factor. The San Jose cost of living is 72.2% higher than the national average. RNs in the Oakland-Fremont-Hayward metropolitan division earn $100,900 a year. In the San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City metropolitan division, the average RN earns $97,600 a year. Though the RN salary in California is undeniably high, it does not necessarily outweigh the massive cost of living here.
The best way to balance an RN salary in California with the high cost of living is to seek employment in one of the nonmetropolitan areas of the state. Of the five highest paying nonmetropolitan areas in the US for RNs, three are in California. The single highest paying nonmetropolitan area in the country for this profession is the Mother Lode Region, otherwise known as Gold Country. Here, the annual mean wage for RNs is $86,800. For some cities in this area, such as Pollock Pines, CA, the cost of living is as low as 18.9% above the national average.
What is the average pay for RN in California?
The RN pay scale varies per state throughout the United States.
RN pay scale may also vary by employer.
An individual's compensation may also vary based on work experience.
California RN Salaries
California RNs earn an average of $83,040 per year.
Some RNs in California earn up to $115,520 per year or more.
California RN Hourly Wage
In 2008, the average hourly earnings of California RNs was $39.92.
In some cases, RNs in California earned up to $55.54 per hour or more.
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