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1990 accounting salaries.


Starting salaries for accounting and financial positions climbed steadily throughout the 1980s and will continue growing by a projected 3.9% in 1990, according to a nationwide study (see exhibit 1 above). Those for information systems and bank jobs are expected to rise by 4.9% over 1989 (see exhibit 2, page 19).

"Mergers and acquisitions have resulted in layoffs and early retirements, placing many high-level financial and accounting candidates in the employment market," said Max Messmer, chairman of Robert Half International, which conducts the annual study. He added, however, that "competing firms are poised to hire this newly available talent, and corporations have expressed particular interest in senior accountants with three-plus years' experience."

In the private sector, experienced internal auditors and cost accountants should command greater than average salary gains, while starting salaries for high-level financial professionals will register moderate gains in 1990.

Despite large corporate mergers and acquisitions that have put many highly qualified candidates into the employment market, some private-sector positions will still see greater-than-average salary increases, "such as controllers at the small to medium-sized companies that continue to fuel the economy's growth," said Messmer.

Other findings include:

* Public accountants at entry level to one year of experience can expect large CPA firms to offer annual starting salaries in the $24,000--$27,500 range, up 5.1% over 1989.

* Starting salaries for senior internal accountants at medium-sized companies will be in the $30,000 -- $36,000 range, a 3.1% rise.

* The starting salary range for corporate controllers at companies with a sales volume of $10 million--$50 million will be $47,000 -- $57,000, up 4% from 1989.

* Corporate tax managers at corporations with a sales volume of $250 million -- $750 million will earn salaries in the $60,000 -- $91,000 range, 2.7% more than 1989.

* The starting salary for full charge (general ledger) bookkeepers will be in the $23,000 -- $30,500 range, up 4.9%.

These salary figures represent national averages, and geographic variances should be applied to all financial and accounting starting salaries of less than $60,000. For example, starting salaries in California, Connecticut and Massachusetts are 5% higher than the national average, while salaries for the same positions tend to run 9%-10% lower than average in Arizona, Florida and Maine. [Exhibits 1 and 2 Omitted]
COPYRIGHT 1989 American Institute of CPA's
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Copyright 1989, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Journal of Accountancy
Date:Dec 1, 1989
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