Top 20 Federal Agencies With the Highest Average Salaries

Which federal agencies have the highest average employee salaries (excluding benefits)?

The average salary levels in these agencies may surprise some readers who may be working in one of the larger or more traditional agencies that work under the standard General Schedule (GS) common throughout the government. Many will find that salary levels in jobs that are common throughout government are higher in these agencies than in other agencies as well.

Here is a listing of the 20 agencies with the highest salaries. Chances are, most Americans have never heard of some of these smaller federal organizations or some of the smaller ones with the lowest average federal salaries.

No doubt, federal employees in other agencies hoping to increase their “high-3” average salary will be checking for vacancies in their occupational field in some of these agencies.

For comparison, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) reported that the average salary for full-time, permanent, non-seasonal federal employees as of September 2013 was $79,374. Some of these agencies operate under a separate authorizing statute and employee salaries are outside of the normal general schedule (GS) that applies to most agencies in government.

The salary data are compiled from the federal salary database at FedsDataCenter.com.

 Agency Average Salary
 FARM CREDIT SYSTEM INSURANCE CORPORATION  $171,827.30
 SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION  $162,856.89
 FEDERAL HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY  $154,969.54
 COMMODITY FUTURES TRADING COMMISSION  $151,844.57
 ARCTIC RESEARCH COMMISSION $149,688.67
 NAT CTR FOR VET ANALYSIS AND STATISTICS  $148,947.33
 COMMISSION TO ELIMINATE CHILD ABUSE  $146,080.00
 MEDICARE PAYMENT ADVISORY COMMISSION $139,032.54
 NATIONAL COUNCIL ON DISABILITY  $138,220.27
 MEDICAID & CHIP PAYMENT & ACCESS COMM  $133,954.98
 AMES RESEARCH CENTER  $133,735.20
 MARINE MAMMAL COMMISSION  $133,129.63
 ARCHITECTL & TRANS BARRIER COMPLIANCE BD  $131,564.17
 CIVILIAN BOARD OF CONTRACT APPEALS  $130,440.43
 DEFENSE NUCLEAR FACILITIES SAFETY BOARD  $130,317.34
 PRIVACY AND CIVIL LIBERTIES OVERSIGHT  $129,676.57
 FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION $129,436.18
 FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION $128,692.38
 DOMESTIC NUCLEAR DETECTION OFFICE $128,329.48
 OFFICE OF NATIONAL DRUG CONTROL POLICY $128,077.82

For comparison, here are the 10 federal organizations with the lowest average federal salary:

 Agency  Average Salary
 CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS FELLOWSHIP FOUNDATION $14,068.67
 ADVISORY COUNCILS AND COMMITTEES $25,660.00
 NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR LITERACY  $26,088.00
 BARRY GOLDWATER SCHOL & EXCEL IN ED FOUN $30,810.00
 VALLES CALDERA TRUST  $50,603.10
 AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE  $50,674.61
 BUREAU OF THE CENSUS  $52,500.54
 FOREST SERVICE  $54,319.29
 ARMED FORCES RETIREMENT HOME  $56,196.59
 INDIAN AFFAIRS  56,319.70

 

© 2016 Ralph R. Smith. All rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced without express written consent from Ralph R. Smith.

About the Author

Ralph Smith has several decades of experience working with federal human resources issues. He has written extensively on a full range of human resources topics in books and newsletters and is a co-founder of two companies and several newsletters on federal human resources.

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