These Are Australia’s 10 Highest-Paying Jobs, According to ATO Data

Highest-earning jobs

If you’ve been thinking about a career change, or are just curious about how much Australia’s highest-earners actually make, you’ll want to familiarise yourself with the annual list of taxation statistics released by the Australian Tax Office based on info they’ve gotten from tallying up people’s paychecks.

The latest Taxation Statistics report, released in August 2022, has data from the 2019-20 financial year. Unsurprisingly, jobs in medicine make up roughly half the list, though gigs in financial services, law and engineering also appear. Interestingly, business chief executives and architects didn’t make the cut. Ahead are all the 10 jobs that did.

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Highest-paid jobs

1. Surgeon – $406,068

Surgeons were the top-earning profession for the 12th consecutive year, making an average of $406,068 a year, or about $4,703 a week after tax.

2. Anaesthetist – $388,814

Anaesthetists came in second place, earning an average of $388,814 a year, or around $4,527 a week after tax. Anaesthetists prepare patients for their operation, helping with everything from pain relief to surgery preparation to implementing a patient care plan before, during and after the procedure.

3. Internal medicine specialist – $310,848

Internal medicine specialists were the third highest-paid, earning $310,848 per year on average, or about $3,732 per week after tax. They’re trained to diagnose, manage and treat difficult-to-diagnose health disorders.

4. Financial dealer – $279,790

Next on the list? Those working as financial dealers, which include stockbrokers and people who buy and sell securities on behalf of clients. They earn $279,790 on average, or about $3,416 per week after tax.

5. Psychiatrist – $252,691

Again representing the medical field, psychiatrists earn $252,691 annually on average, or about $3,140 per week after tax. They specialise in diagnosing and treating mental illnesses.

6. Other medical practitioners – $232,903

This category covers jobs like dermatologists, gynaecologists, ophthalmologists, pathologists, diagnostic and interventional radiologists, and radiation oncologists, and is the biggest job group on the list. While incomes differ depending on the specific jobs, on average, ‘other medical practitioners’ receive a taxable income of $232,903 per year, or about $2,938 a week after tax.

7. Judicial or other legal professionals – $189,538

Judicial and ‘other legal professionals’ earn $189,538 per year on average, or about $2,496 per week after tax also made the list. This includes judges and magistrates, but not barristers or solicitors. Articled clerks are also included in this list, so the average income is skewed lower. To give you an idea of the salary discrepancy, the average judge has a taxable income of $423,945, while the average articled clerk has a taxable income of $71,774.

8. Mining engineer – $188,083

Mining engineers are in charge of evaluating, planning and overseeing the construction of a mine. They earn $188,083 per year on average, or about $2,481 per week after tax. Within that group, petroleum mining engineers have a higher average taxable income of $196,156.

9. Engineering manager – $161,514

Next are engineering managers, responsible for planning and overseeing engineering projects. On average, engineering managers have a taxable income of $161,514 per year, or about $2,182 per week after tax.

10. Financial investment adviser or manager – $155,882

Finally, we have financial advisers and financial investment managers. They work with other financial professionals to research and plan client investment portfolios. On average, they have a taxable income of $155,882 per year, or about $2,116 per week after tax. On average, financial advisers have lower incomes, at $119,606 per year, while financial investment managers earn $331,812 on average.

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