How Much Money Do Most Newscasters Make?
Newscasters and television personalities have a broad differential within their salary ranges. National network news anchors use agents to help them negotiate multi-million-dollar contracts, while entry-level newscasters in small rural markets often earn an amount that's barely above minimum wage. Often, the salary a newscaster earns is based upon the the size of the market the newscaster works in, paired with experience and popularity, which is tabulated via television ratings. As such, a news anchor salary or reporter salary is generally determined by market size and corresponding advertising rates.
Television and radio market sizes are determined by the population of the cities in which they operate. Typically, newscasters in small, and even in mid-sized markets are responsible for working double duty as writers and reporters, in which they help generate the news copy they read on the air, or produce into recorded segments called "packages." Newscasters may also have producing oversight, in which they work with assignment editors to determine stories and news items to cover, as well as shape the direction of story angles. When air time arrives, television newscasters are responsible for looking professional on air, reading stories, bantering with co-hosts and keeping the program on track. They may also conduct live interviews, introduce news segments, and in some instances, report from the field.
A bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism is typically the minimum entry into the field of broadcasting. Having knowledge or education in a field related to the topic the reporter is covering is can also be an asset. For example, a business reporter who has a business degree will have more credibility than a business reporter who is without a business degree. The salary of a news anchor may also be determined based on the anchor's educational credentials.
Newscasters may work in commercial, network, cable, or in public television or radio stations. They may work via podcast, for an online news services or even with in-house corporate news networks. Newscasters may also find employment as correspondents in which they represent a certain part of the country or world, or as freelancers, going on assignment or pitching newsworthy events to cover.
Years of Experience
Moving up the ranks as a newscaster is often a combination of experience and luck. Journalists who are exceptional writers and who communicate well, have a trustworthy image and good contacts often are promoted through the ranks because of their reputations. A strong following can translate into higher ratings, which, in turn, determines the advertising rates that broadcast companies can charge. Newscasters who help draw big-money advertising often have more room to negotiate their salary.
- 0-5 years: $26,351 - $82,910
$34,731 - $120,429
* 10-20 years:
$39,823 - $149,987
* Over 20 years: $42,525 - $196,127
Job Growth Trends
According to the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook, jobs in the newscasting and announcing fields are anticipated to decline at a rate of approximately nine percent through 2026. The decrease in job availability is tied to an overall trend in media consumption, which is primarily online. Top TV anchor salary ranges will likely be earned by those with experience.
Lisa McQuerrey has been an award-winning writer and author for more than 25 years. She specializes in business, finance, workplace/career and education. Publications she’s written for include Southwest Exchange and InBusiness Las Vegas.
How Much Does a News Anchor Make?
Working as a news anchor can lead to exciting career opportunities in broadcasting. You could make a wide salary range as a news anchor, depending on your location and experience level. Discovering how much news anchors make can help you decide whether this career path is a good choice for you. In this article, we discuss how much news anchors make and explore how to pursue this career path.
How much do news anchors make?
News anchors make an average of $38,647 per year in the United States. The typical salary range for news anchors starts at $14,000 per year and extends to $95,000 per year. Experience level and location are two of the biggest factors that affect news anchors' earning potential.
Top TV anchor salaries by state
Typical salaries for news anchors can vary significantly across the nation. Here are the salaries for news anchors in each state:
- Alabama: $36,139 per year
- Alaska: $38,871 per year
- Arizona: $37,743 per year
- Arkansas: $35,698 per year
- California: $51,001 per year
- Colorado: $38,661 per year
- Connecticut: $39,789 per year
- Delaware: $37,562 per year
- District of Columbia: $50,226 per year
- Florida: $11.48 per hour
- Georgia: $30.22 per hour
- Hawaii: $37,210 per year
- Idaho: $9.25 per hour
- Illinois: $33,988 per year
- Indiana: $48,165 per year
- Iowa: $28,387 per year
- Kansas: $29,665 per year
- Kentucky: $35,418 per year
- Louisiana: $36,281 per year
- Maine: $36,076 per year
- Maryland: $39,880 per year
- Massachusetts: $41,153 per year
- Michigan: $37,206 per year
- Minnesota: $26,306 per year
- Mississippi: $25,434 per year
- Missouri: $37,583 per year
- Montana: $34,565 per year
- Nebraska: $27,764 per year
- Nevada: $28,272 per year
- New Hampshire: $36,923 per year
- New Jersey: $40,013 per year
- New Mexico: $36,429 per year
- New York: $43,216 per year
- North Carolina: $37,451 per year
- North Dakota: $37,017 per year
- Ohio: $37,124 per year
- Oklahoma: $35,690 per year
- Oregon: $38,366 per year
- Pennsylvania: $38,163 per year
- Rhode Island: $37,597 per year
- South Carolina: $36,328 per year
- South Dakota: $35,400 per year
- Tennessee: $36,624 per year
- Texas: $39,807 per year
- Utah: $35,925 per year
- Vermont: $36,336 per year
- Virginia: $39,250 per year
- Washington: $40,282 per year
- West Virginia: $34,818 per year
- Wisconsin: $37,096 per year
- Wyoming: $37,951 per year
What do news anchors do?
News anchors deliver live news from TV studios. They read news from a teleprompter, which includes stories that they have developed and introductions to pre-recorded videos and live broadcasts from news reporters. News anchors may also introduce other specialized anchors for focused news segments, or interview people in the studio.
To develop stories, news anchors research current events and interview subjects. They also write stories and scripts. Many news anchors also select or produce videos to accompany the stories they discuss.
What is the work environment like for news anchors?
News anchors typically work in television studios, where they discuss current and local events on live TV. Before they begin broadcasting, they may work in office settings, where they review notes and practice scripts. They also spend time in wardrobe and makeup rooms, where stylists and makeup artists prepare them to go on TV.
Most news anchors work full time, and they often present one or more TV news programs each day. They may work in the early mornings, during the day, in the evenings or on weekends. Some TV news anchors may be on call so they can comment on breaking news when it happens.
What advancement opportunities are available for news anchors?
After gaining experience in the broadcast news field, successful TV anchors may be able to pursue a wide range of advanced positions. Those who start out working in smaller cities often aim to become news anchors for bigger TV stations in major cities or even for national networks. Experienced news anchors can also aim to become news directors for TV stations and networks.
Related: 16 Top Communications Degree Jobs
How do you become a news anchor?
Most employers expect news anchors to have a bachelor's degree, relevant work experience and key skills. To become a news anchor, follow these five steps:
- Earn a bachelor's degree.
- Gain relevant work experience.
- Create a resume.
- Practice important skills.
- Look for opportunities to advance.
1. Earn a bachelor's degree
First, pursue a bachelor's degree to build a foundation in language, journalism and communications. To prepare for a career as a news anchor, choose one of the most popular majors for this career:
This major can give you a broad foundation in media and global culture, due to classes on communication and technology, mass media, rhetoric and the public sphere, public speaking and argumentation and advocacy.
With this course of study, you can learn how to tell captivating, fact-based stories while following a series of ethical principles. Coursework usually includes multimedia storytelling, field reporting, investigative reporting, videography and creating news applications.
This major can teach you the basics of reading, writing, speaking and listening effectively. When you study English, you can expect to take classes on literature, creative writing, philosophy and interdisciplinary areas like modern thought or political science.
With this major, you can build a strong foundation in political science, history and international issues. Courses generally cover American government, politics and the media, international relations and current events like climate change and food politics.
Related:10 Popular History Degree Jobs
2. Gain relevant work experience
Before you begin looking for news anchor jobs, get experience working in the news industry. Some popular entry-level jobs for news anchors include:
- Volunteering for a college TV or radio station
- Interning with a local news station
- Working as a field reporter or a correspondent for a news station
3. Create a resume
Once you have completed the basic requirements for working as a news anchor, create a resume that showcases your skills and experience. Include your college degree and relevant coursework, and discuss your internships and work experience. You can also create a portfolio with video clips that show your speech and delivery style. Be prepared to provide professional references upon request.
Related: How to Make a Resume (With Examples)
4. Practice important skills
To succeed as a news anchor, you should take every possible opportunity to improve your skills. For example, you need excellent communication skills to speak clearly and discuss news stories effectively. You also need strong interpersonal skills to create relationships with viewers, fellow anchors and interviewees. Also, you may need computer skills if you record or edit your own digital news pieces.
5. Look for opportunities to advance
After gaining five or more years of experience as a news anchor, you may be ready for a new professional challenge. Consider looking for a job as a news anchor in a larger city or as a news director for a TV station or network.
Average Newscaster Salary
Avg. Base Salary (USD)
The average salary for a Newscaster is $56,250
What is the Pay by Experience Level for Newscasters?
An early career Newscaster with 1-4 years of experience earns an average total compensation (includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of $42,500 based on 5 salaries. A mid-career Newscaster with 5-9 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $62,500 based on 5 salaries. An experienced Newscaster with 10-19 years …Read more
What Do Newscasters Do?
Newscasters report the news to the public, usually live and "on-air" via radio, television, or internet broadcasts. The main goal is to present current news stories in an interesting and cohesive way, which requires a great deal of preparation and working with a range of professionals to investigate and develop stories into presentable formats.
Newscasters may be responsible for researching, writing, and producing stories or work with others who perform these tasks. They must have working …Read more
This data is based on 1 survey responses. Learn more about the gender pay gap.
Common Health Benefits
Average News Anchor Salary
Avg. Base Salary (USD)
The average salary for a News Anchor is $62,406
$485 - $31k
What is the Pay by Experience Level for News Anchors?
An entry-level News Anchor with less than 1 year experience can expect to earn an average total compensation (includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of $35,796 based on 30 salaries. An early career News Anchor with 1-4 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $48,668 based on 129 salaries. A mid-career News …Read more
What Do News Anchors Do?
News anchors generally are responsible for presenting local, national and/or world news to the public. They generally work in a studio to produce TV or radio news programs, although they sometimes report or anchor programs from the scene of the broadcast's subject. The news anchor often reads compiled news stories from a teleprompter, as well as conducts on-air interviews with the subjects of news, experts and reporter colleagues as needed. They also react to breaking news as it emerges, …Read more
News Anchor Tasks
- Present both live and pre-recorded daily news stories in a professional manner on television.
- Send timely updates via social media to engage the viewing audience and keep them informed.
- Venture into the field to cover live events and unfolding stories as they happen.
- Cover breaking news stories in real time and follow along with updates.
- Research and develop news stories from the idea stages to a written script.
Job Satisfaction for News Anchor
Based on 75 responses, the job of News Anchor has received a job satisfaction rating of 4.13 out of 5. On average, News Anchors are highly satisfied with their job.
This data is based on 197 survey responses. Learn more about the gender pay gap.
Common Health Benefits
Who Are the Highest-Paid News Anchors?
Broadcasting the news has taken a hit in the information age, as more and more media consumers get their news from digital platforms rather than turning on Fox, CNN or some of the other "alphabet" TV news networks.
Even so, being a news anchor is still a lucrative career in 2019, especially if you're in television representing one of the big media broadcasters.
If you host a nightly news show on Fox FOXA or MSNBC or anchor the news for a major network like CBS CBS or ABC, chances are you're going to pull in millions of dollars annually, even though the average U.S. news anchor salary stands at $58,964, according to Payscale.com
The highest-paid news anchors are doing better than that - way better. And these marquee news anchors are raking in the most money on an annual basis, with some familiar names at the top of the list.
The Highest-Paid News Anchors in 2019
1. Sean Hannity
Salary - $40 million
Sean Hannity, a stalwart at Fox News as host of "The Sean Hannity Show" earns $40 million at the broadcast network, and has an estimated net worth of $250 million.
A New York City native, Hannity's broadcast career dates back to the early 1980s in Alabama and Georgia, and as a talk show host at the University of California, where he attended college. Hannity was hired by Fox News in 1996 for the news and political talk show "Hannity and Colmes," which lasted to 2009.
A resident of Long Island, N.Y., Hannity continues to host both a weekday radio shows and his FOX television broadcast, making him one of the hardest working and wealthiest news personalities in the U.S.
2. Diane Sawyer
Salary - $22 million
Diane Sawyer made history in 1984 as the first-ever woman correspondent for CBS' "60 Minutes" and as a news anchor for CBS News (for "CBS Morning News,") then ABC News where she continues a high-profile broadcasting career with regular interviews for "ABC World News," where she served as news anchor from 2009 to 2014.
Sawyer, who has an estimated net worth of $85 million, was married to Hollywood producer and director Mike Nichols, who died in 2014.
3. Robin Roberts
Salary - $18 million
Co-host of ABC's "Good Morning America," Roberts took an alternative route to news broadcasting, working for ESPN before leaving for ABC in 2005.
Roberts earns an annual salary of $18 million at ABC. A cancer survivor, Roberts is a frequent speaker on the subject of illness and recovery and has earned four Emmy awards for her work at ABC.
4. George Stephanopoulos
Salary - $15 million.
A former aide to President Clinton, Stephanopoulos earns $15 million annually as the co-anchor of ABC's "Good Morning America" and as a regular anchor at the network's "ABC World News Tonight." He has an estimated net worth of $40 million, most of it earned from his time at ABC.
Born in Fall River, Mass., Stephanopoulos is a Rhodes Scholar and launched his political career working on the presidential campaign with Michael Dukakis, former governor of Massachusetts and the Democratic party's presidential nominee in 1988, who lost to George H.W. Bush.
After working in the Clinton administration until 1996, Stephanopoulos wrote a best-selling book on his role as a senior adviser for President Clinton and has served as a news correspondent and anchor since 2002.
5. Anderson Cooper
Salary - $12 million
Anderson Cooper is the long-time host of CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360" and is the son of Gloria Vanderbilt, who recently died from cancer at age 95.
As a result of his inheritance from his mother's estate valued at $1.5 billion (his father died in 1978), Cooper's net worth is in question. Before his inheritance, Cooper's net worth was estimated at around $100 million.
Given that he was the primary recipient of his mother's estate, that net worth figure is expected to rise dramatically to well over $1 billion once Cooper's inheritance is paid out.
6. Shepard Smith
Salary - $10 million
Shepard Smith is the host of Fox News' "Shepard Smith Reporting" while also serving as managing news editor for the network.
He earns a salary of $10 million annually and has an estimated net worth of $25 million. A native of Holly Springs, Miss., Smith began his broadcasting career in Florida and California, before moving on to Fox in 1996.
7. Maria Bartiromo
Salary - $10 million
Maria Bartiromo has carved a formidable reputation as a tough, no-nonsense business and finance reporter at CNBC and now at Fox Business Network, where she holds the title of chief global business editor.
With her husband, Wall Street financier Jonathan Steinberg, Bartiromo has a net worth of $50 million and earns an annual salary of $10 million from Fox News. At Fox, Bartiromo hosts "Morning with Maria" and "Maria Bartiromo's Wall Street" for the network.
She also appears frequently playing herself in Hollywood film roles, appearing in "Risk/Reward," "The Taking of Pelham 123," and "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps," among other movies.
8. Joe Scarborough
Salary - $8 million
Joe Scarborough is a former congressman from Florida who has hosted the MSNBC newscast "Morning Joe" since 2007. Scarborough first got into television news after leaving politics in 2001, starting as the host of "Scarborough Country" for MSNBC.
Scarborough earns a salary of $8 million annually from MSNBC and has an estimated net worth of $25 million. He is married to "Morning Joe" co-host Mika Brzezinski and serves as a fellow at Harvard University's Institute of Politics.
9. Bret Baier
Salary - $7 million
The host of Fox News "Special Report with Bret Baier", Baier is making a name for himself as one of the five top-rated news anchors in the U.S. He earns a salary of $7 million annually and his net worth stands at an estimated $16 million in 2019.
The Rumson, N.J. native served as Fox News White House correspondent before garnering his nightly news show. He's also reported abroad from war-torn hot spots like Afghanistan and Iran over 20 times. Before joining Fox News in 1998, Baier worked as a news reporter in Raleigh, N.C.
10. Scott Pelley
Salary - $7 million
Pelley has been with CBS News for over three decades and he's known primarily for his anchor role at the network from 2011 to 2017, and his longstanding correspondent's role with CBS's "60 Minutes." He previously held the White House chief correspondent position at the legendary news network.
The San Antonio native earns an annual salary of $7 million and has an estimated net worth of $17 million. His 2019 book "Truth Worth Telling: A Reporter's Search for Meaning in the Stories of Our Times" is a memoir of Pelley's career as a reporter and serves a valuable snapshot of a life spent covering world events like Sept. 11 and the Iraq War.
11. Rachel Maddow
Salary - $7 million
Rachel Maddow earns $7 million annually as a news anchor at MSNBC and has an estimated net worth of $20 million.
The Castro Valley, Calif., native is a news industry pioneer as the first-ever gay/lesbian host of a major network news show, a feat she achieved with the launch of "The Rachel Maddow Show" for MSNBC in 2009.
Maddow was one of the original hosts for "Air America" the politically left-leaning national radio network back in 2004 and 2005, and moved on to MSNBC in 2005 as a network contributor. She scored her show after acting as a substitute host for various network news programs in 2008 and 2009 and has held strong in the ratings ever since.
She is also the author of the 2012 book: "Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power," which became a New York Times best-seller.
12. Tucker Carlson
Salary: $6 million
The California native is one of the highest-rated television personalities in the U.S., through his Fox News show "Tucker Carlson Tonight."
Carlson began his career as a reporter for the Arkansas-Democrat Gazette before eventually mobbing onto the broadcast side of the business with CNN's "Crossfire."
His 2019 salary stands at $6 million and net worth figure stands at $20 million, augmented not only by his popular nightly news show on Fox News but also from a $10 million publishing deal for his book "Ship of Fools: How a Selfish Ruling Class Is Bringing America to the Brink of Revolution."
13. Lawrence O'Donnell
Salary - $5 million
The native Bostonian is a fixture on MSNBC as host of "The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell." He earns $5 million annually and has an estimated net worth of $16 million. O'Donnell comes from a political background working as an aide to the New York Sen. Patrick Moynihan, and dabbled in Hollywood as a writer for the television show "The West Wing." He is also a strong contributor to charitable causes - O'Donnell's own "Kids in Need of Desks" initiative for Africa school children has generated $6.5 million in donations.
14. Lester Holt
Salary: $4 million
The long-time NBC news broadcaster holds down two jobs at the network - the host of "Weekday Nightly News" and "Dateline NBC".
The 60-year-old Holt got his NBC anchor job after long-time host Brian Williams was suspended from his anchor duties in 2015. Holt, a California native who attended the University of California, earns $4 million a year and has an estimated net worth of $12 million.
15. Erin Burnett
Salary: $3 million
Born in 1976 in Mardela Springs, Md., Erin Burnett is the host of "Erin Burnett Outfront" on CNN. Before that gig, Burnett co-hosted CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" from 2005 to 2011.
Burnett started her professional career as a financial analyst for Goldman Sachs GS, working in the financial giant's investment banking department, giving her a special insight into the financial industry and Wall Street.
Burnett earns an estimated $3 million a year from her on-air work and has a net worth of $13 million.
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News anchor salary
The average salary for a news anchor in the United States is around
News anchors earn an average yearly salary of $66,880.
Wages typically start from $27,370 and go up to $200,180.
38% above national average ● Updated in 2018
News anchor earnings by seniority
Approximate values based on highest and lowest earning segments.
News anchor salary by state
|State Name||Average Salary|
|District of Columbia||$93,890|
How much does a News Anchor earn?
A news anchor salary depends 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. According to PayScale.com, news anchors earned between $30,773 and $129,253 a year in January 2016.
In order to get the highest salary possible, it is wise to consider pursuing an bachelor's degree and possibly a master's degree in journalism, English, communications or a related field. Experience, which can also include internships, is also very important.
Working for large national news markets will earn you a higher salary, which are typically found in major cities and metropolitan areas. Entry-level news anchors usually start out in a small market that may not pay as much but may serve as a stepping stone for advancement.
How do news anchor salaries compare to similar careers?
News anchors earn about the same as related careers in the United States. On average, they make more than producers.
Source: CareerExplorer (Aggregated)
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