Do News Anchors and News Reporters Earn Different Salaries?

News anchors and reporters play slightly different roles in journalism, and reporters usually earn less than anchors. Read on to learn more about the factors that result in different salaries for these professionals. Schools offering Journalism degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career and Salary Overview

News anchors deliver news stories through live television broadcasts, videotaped news, radio and other medium. On the other hand, news reporters cover news stories by gathering information about an event, interviewing people and reviewing sources of information to put together a news story for print, radio, television or the web. News anchors generally bring home bigger paychecks by the salaries of both these positions depend on upon the size of the market in which you're employed, the amount of education you've completed and the employer for whom you work.

Important Facts About Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts

Job Outlook (2014-2024) 9% decline
Entry-level Education Bachelor's degree in journalism or communication
Key Skills Objectivity, communication, interpersonal
Work Environment A lot of field time, on location or in studio, sometimes dangerous locations

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

News Anchors

According to PayScale.com, news anchors earned between $30,773 and $129,253 a year in January 2016. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the mean annual salary of a broadcast news analyst was $84,380 in May 2013 (www.bls.gov). The bottom ten percent earned $28,210 or less annually, while the top ten percent made $186,260 or more a year.

News Reporters

The salaries of news reporters are lower than those of news anchors and vary widely. In January 2016, PayScale.com reported that news reporters earned between $24,034 and $71,721 a year. According to the BLS, the average annual salary of a reporter or correspondent was $44,360 a year in May 2013. The top ten percent earned $81,940 or more a year, while the bottom ten percent earned $21,090 or less a year.

Salary by Industry

In May 2014, the BLS reported that broadcast news analysts working in the radio and television broadcasting industry averaged $85,020 per year. On the other hand, those working for newspaper, periodical, book and directory publishers averaged $112,850 a year, which was the highest salary of all industries.

Salary by Location

According to the BLS, the top-paying states for broadcast news analysts in May 2014 were Oklahoma, Colorado, Arizona, Massachusetts, and Ilinois. None of these states offered average salaries lower than $90,970. Arkansas and Mississippi were among the states with the lowest average pay ranging from $55,240-$69,380.

Salary by Industry

In May 2014, the BLS reported that newspaper, periodical, book and directory publishers employed the most reporters and correspondents and offered them an average wage of $40,810. On the other hand, radio and television broadcasting had the second highest employment level and offered these professionals an average wage of $49,640.

Salary by Location

According to the BLS, the top-paying states for reporters and correspondents in May 2014 were the District of Columbia, New York, Massachusetts, Georgia and Rhode Island. These states offered these professionals respective average wages as high as $74,770 and as low as $54,080. The lowest-paid reporters and correspondents worked in states that included West Virginia, Wyoming and Iowa, where average wages ranged from $27,530-$34,590.

Other Salary Factors

To ensure the highest salary possible as a news anchor or reporter, you may consider pursuing an undergraduate degree and possibly a graduate degree in journalism, English, communications or a related field. Experience is also important. This includes internships at news stations or jobs at school-run news stations.

News anchors and news reporters earn higher salaries by working for large national news markets, which are usually in major cities and metropolitan areas. Entry-level news reporters usually start out in a small market that may not pay as much but may serve as a stepping stone for advancement. With experience and the right presentation skills, a news reporter may become a news anchor. After gaining experience as an anchor, you may pursue higher pay in major markets.

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