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Registered Nurse RN Salary

So how much does a Registered Nurse make, what is the average RN salary, the highest paid cities, states and industries?  Below you will find all of the answers laid out clearly in easy to read tables and charts. Finding all of the relevant figures can be a bit of a task – so I have put everything in one place.

You can also check out the Nurse Salary by State page for a deeper look at Registered Nursing salaries in each individual state in the U.S. – it breaks the information down into Metropolitan and Non-Metropolitan areas and employment by industry. Easily find the important details for Your town, city and state.

Don’t forget we have a detailed Registered Nurse Guide – covering everything you need to know about being a RN – and now we have a full guide to Registered Nurse Training Programs.

The U.S. Average Registered Nurse RN Salary is $67,930

In the United States the average annual salary for a Registered Nurse is currently $67,930 which breaks down as an average of $32.66 per hour, $1,306 per week and a monthly salary of $5,660.

Have a look at how this compares to the national average wage figures.

Hourly WageWeekly WageMonthly Salary Annual Salary
Registered Nurse RN Average Salary$32.66$1,306$5,660$67,930
U.S. National Average Salary$22.01$880$3,815$45,790

Salary Range

Obviously not all RN’s earn the same. Wage levels vary quite a bit depending on experience, years in the job, level of training , industry and location etc. The table below will give you an idea of the range to expect. The figures show the average wage earned by the top earning  10% and the lowest paid 10% of registered nurses. It is a useful way to see the potential earnings overall.

Highest Paid States for Registered NurseRegistered Nurse Salary by State

California comes out as the highest paying state for a Registered Nurse with an average annual salary of $94,120 – closely followed by Hawaii and Massachusetts. Iowa is the lowest paid state on mainland U.S.A. with an average RN salary of $52,540 – not so great if you live there! The large variation can in part be explained by simple supply and demand influences.

You can click on the map to find Registered Nurse salary information in all states – here you can select your own state and see all the relevant data – highest paying areas, employment figures and more.

StateHourly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual Salary
California $45.25 $7,843 $94,120
Hawaii $40.74 $7,063 $84,750
Massachusetts $40.08 $6,948 $83,370
Alaska $38.93 $6,748 $80,970
Oregon $37.75 $6,544 $78,530
Nevada $37.44 $6,489 $77,870
New Jersey $36.45 $6,318 $75,820
District Columbia $36.44 $6,316 $75,790
Connecticut $36.37 $6,305 $75,660
Washington $36.22 $6,279 $75,350

Highest Paying Cities or Metropolitan Areas for RN

California’s metropolitan areas are topping the tables again here. San Jose, Oakland, San Francisco and Sacramento are amongst the highest paying cities for Registered nurses in the country – well above the average salary rates nationwide.

Metropolitan AreaHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual Salary
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara CA $59.13 $2,365 $10,249 $122,990
Vallejo-Fairfield CA $57.36 $2,294 $9,943 $119,310
Oakland-Fremont-Hayward CA $54.58 $2,183 $9,460 $113,520
San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont CA $53.91 $2,157 $9,345 $112,140
San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City CA $53.19 $2,128 $9,219 $110,630
Sacramento--Arden-Arcade--Roseville CA $51.79 $2,071 $8,976 $107,710

Highest Paid Non-Metropolitan Areas – Registered Nurse

Non Metropolitan AreaHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual Salary
Mother Lode Region of California $44.16 $1,766 $7,654 $91,850
Eastern Sierra Region of California $42.41 $1,696 $7,351 $88,210
Northern Mountains Region of California $41.28 $1,651 $7,156 $85,870
Railbelt / Southwest Alaska $36.73 $1,469 $6,366 $76,390
Southeast Alaska $36.40 $1,456 $6,310 $75,720
Coastal Oregon $35.96 $1,438 $6,233 $74,790

Number of Registered Nurses Employed in the United States

The total employed figures across all states stands at 2,633,980. The chart below shows the top 10 states by total number of RN’s employed.

Highest Paying Industries for Registered Nurse

RN’s can find employment across a fairly wide range of industries – not just in hospitals. Have a look at the top paying industries below.

IndustryHourly WageAnnual Salary
Federal government including USPS $38.10 $79,240
Colleges universities and professional schools - State owned $37.23 $77,430
Educational Services - State owned $37.04 $77,040
Specialty hospitals - State owned $36.85 $76,650
Colleges Universities and Professional Schools $35.84 $74,540
Personal Care Services $35.39 $73,620
Specialty hospitals - Privately owned $35.28 $73,380
Office Administrative Services $34.26 $71,260
Research and Development in Social Sciences $34.24 $71,210
Outpatient Care Centers $34.23 $71,200

Career Outlook

The career outlook for Registered Nurses is very strong with expected growth of 19% (all careers growth is estimated at 11%) between 2012 – 2022. According to projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics by 2022 there will be an increase in the number of Registered nurses of 526,800 – yes, over half a million! That’s a lot of new nursing jobs for the near future – definitely a career with good prospects.

Don’t forget to check out our pages for Nurse Practitioners, LVN or LPN salary and general nursing careers salary information.

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