SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) — A new report says the highest paid workers in the nation are here in the Bay Area.
Topping the list compiled by 24/7 Wall Street is San Jose, with an average annual median income of $117,000. Next is San Francisco-Oakland at just over $100,000, and fourth is Napa with a median income of $86,000, according to 24/7 Wall Street.
“It’s no surprise,” said Russell Hancock, the CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, which studies issues affecting the valley. “Our numbers are skewed by people
who are making obscene amounts of money. Silicon Valley is a place that has 50 billionaires,” Hancock said.
But it’s also a place where workers pay the highest prices for food, gasoline and – of course – housing. And the gap between rich and poor is widening.,
“We’re spiralling upwards in terms of our costs, our housing, for everything,” Hancock said. “You see those costs rising faster than anywhere in the country. And it’s because the market can bear it.”
The report also found that San Jose has the most highly educated workforce of any major city, with over 51 percent having at least a bachelor’s degree. Universities like San Jose State are seen as the path to prosperity.
“I’ve been recruited by a lot of companies actually,” said Bienvinido Ona, who is graduating next week with a degree in computer engineering.
He said has a dozen offers from Silicon Valley companies that will put him close to that high average salary right out of college.
“It’s always at least $90 to $120,000. That’s good money. Really good. I’m lucky,” said Ona.
One university career planner says college degrees in computer engineering, software and accounting are one of the fastest ways to join Silicon Valley’s wealthy workforce.