The new minimum salaries in finance and tech for H1B visas

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The new minimum salaries in finance and tech for H1B visas

Changes are afoot in H1B Visa land. On Tuesday this week, the Trump administration announced new and higher pay boundaries for H1B Visa eligibility.

Under the new rule, which is due to be published later this week and which will take effect immediately, H1B applicants will need to be earning a salary equivalent to the 45th percentile of their profession's salary if they're an entry-level worker, rising to 95th percentile for higher-skilled workers. 

In the past, the boundaries were set at the 17th and 67th percentiles respectively. 

What does this mean for anyone who wants an H1B visa for a role in finance or technology in New York City and elsewhere? 

The answer is that it depends upon the role you're applying for and where it's located. The guide salaries for each category of employment in each location are provided by the U.S. government's Foreign Labor Certification Data Center (FLCDC). 

The Center doesn't give the exact 45th and 95th percentiles for all roles, but it does provide the median wage for each category, the 90th percentile, mean averages (and sometimes more). 

We've listed these below for finance and some tech jobs, plus the Center's definitions by role.

If you're applying for a junior role and you're earning above the median you'll be in the clear. If you're applying for a senior role you'll need to be above the 90th percentile ($208k in 2019 for most finance jobs in NYC).  Some are already suggesting that the new rules mean banks won't employ anyone on H1B visas below vice president level. Boundaries are likely to rise when numbers are recalibrated for 2020. 

Investment fund managers, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Plan, direct, or coordinate investment strategy or operations for a large pool of liquid assets supplied by institutional investors or individual investors.

Median Wages (2019): $53.19 hourly, $110,630 annual

Mean Wage:$71.19 hour - $148,075 year

90th percentile: $208,000+

Financial quantitative analysts, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Develop quantitative financial products used to inform individuals or financial institutions engaged in saving, lending, investing, borrowing, or managing risk. Investigate methods for financial analysis to create mathematical models used to develop improved analytical tools or advanced financial investment instruments.

Median wage: 2019: 39.22 hourly, $81,590 annual

Mean Wage:$63.31 hour - $131,685 year

90th percentile: $208,000+

Risk Management Specialists, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Analyze and manage risk management issues by identifying, measuring, and making decisions on operational or enterprise risks for an organization.

Median wage, 2019: $39.22 hourly, $81,590 annual

Mean Wage:$63.31 hour - $131,685 year

90th percentile: $208,000+

Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Buy and sell securities or commodities in investment and trading firms, or provide financial services to businesses and individuals. May advise customers about stocks, bonds, mutual funds, commodities, and market conditions.

Median Wage, 2019: $29.94 hourly, $62,270 annual

Mean Wage:$72.06 hour - $149,885 year

90th percentile: $208,000+

Securities and Commodities Traders, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Buy and sell securities and commodities to transfer debt, capital, or risk. Establish and negotiate unit prices and terms of sale.

Median Wage: $29.94 hourly, $62,270 annual

Mean Wage (H-2B):$72.06 hour - $149,885 year

90th percentile: $208,000+

Financial Analyst, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Conduct quantitative analyses of information affecting investment programs of public or private institutions.

Median Wage (2019): $39.22 hourly, $81,590 annual

Mean Wage (H-2B):$63.31 hour - $131,685 year

90th percentile: $208,000+

Investment underwriters, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Manage communications or negotiations between corporate issuers of securities and clients regarding private equity investments. Underwrite the issuance of securities to provide capital for client growth. Negotiate and structure the terms of mergers or acquisitions.

Median wage, 2019: $39.22 hourly, $81,590 annual

Mean Wage: $63.31 hour - $131,685 year

90th percentile: $156,150

Brokerage clerks, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Perform duties related to the purchase, sale or holding of securities. Duties include writing orders for stock purchases or sales, computing transfer taxes, verifying stock transactions, accepting and delivering securities, tracking stock price fluctuations, computing equity, distributing dividends, and keeping records of daily transactions and holdings.

Median wage, 2019: $25.36 hourly, $52,750 annual

90th percentile:  $78,160

Level 1 Wage:$28.65 hour - $59,592 year
Level 2 Wage:$39.05 hour - $81,224 year
Level 3 Wage:$49.46 hour - $102,877 year
Level 4 Wage:$59.86 hour - $124,509 year
Mean Wage (H-2B):$33.21 hour - $69,077 year

Financial Examiners, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Enforce or ensure compliance with laws and regulations governing financial and securities institutions and financial and real estate transactions. May examine, verify, or authenticate records.

Median wage, 2019: $38.99 hourly, $81,090 annual

90th percentile: $202,510

Level 1 Wage:$49.62 hour - $103,210 year
Level 2 Wage:$75.36 hour - $156,749 year
Level 3 Wage:$101.09 hour - $210,267 year
Level 4 Wage:$126.83 hour - $263,806 year
Mean Wage (H-2B):$60.23 hour - $125,278 year

Software developers, applications, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Develop, create, and modify general computer applications software or specialized utility programs. Analyze user needs and develop software solutions. Design software or customize software for client use with the aim of optimizing operational efficiency. May analyze and design databases within an application area, working individually or coordinating database development as part of a team. May supervise computer programmers.

Median wage, 2019: $51.69 hourly, $107,510 annual

90th percentile: $181,210

Level 1 Wage:$55.89 hour - $116,251 year
Level 2 Wage:$72.12 hour - $150,010 year
Level 3 Wage:$88.35 hour - $183,768 year
Level 4 Wage:$104.58 hour - $217,526 year
Mean Wage:$58.76 hour - $122,221 year

Computer programmers, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Create, modify, and test the code, forms, and script that allow computer applications to run. Work from specifications drawn up by software developers or other individuals. May assist software developers by analyzing user needs and designing software solutions. May develop and write computer programs to store, locate, and retrieve specific documents, data, and information.

Median wage, 2019: $41.61 hourly, $86,550 annual

90th percentile: $154,540

Level 1 Wage:$42.56 hour - $88,525 year
Level 2 Wage:$58.29 hour - $121,243 year
Level 3 Wage:$74.03 hour - $153,982 year
Level 4 Wage:$89.76 hour - $186,701 year
Mean Wage (H-2B):$47.15 hour - $98,072 year

Database architects, New York-Newark-Jersey City

Definition: Design strategies for enterprise database systems and set standards for operations, programming, and security. Design and construct large relational databases. Integrate new systems with existing warehouse structure and refine system performance and functionality.

Median wage, 2019: $42.57 hourly, $88,550 annual

90th percentile: $153,520

Level 1 Wage:$27.65 hour - $57,512 year
Level 2 Wage:$36.51 hour - $75,941 year
Level 3 Wage:$45.36 hour - $94,349 year
Level 4 Wage:$54.22 hour - $112,778 year
Mean Wage (H-2B):$30.96 hour - $64,397 year

Database Architects, San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA

Definition: Design strategies for enterprise database systems and set standards for operations, programming, and security. Design and construct large relational databases. Integrate new systems with existing warehouse structure and refine system performance and functionality.

Median wage, 2019: $97,600

90th percentile: $190,910

Level 1 Wage:$49.89 hour - $103,771 year
Level 2 Wage:$72.56 hour - $150,925 year
Level 3 Wage:$95.24 hour - $198,099 year
Level 4 Wage:$117.91 hour - $245,253 year
Mean Wage (H-2B):$57.87 hour - $120,370 year

Computer programmers, San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA

Definition: Create, modify, and test the code, forms, and script that allow computer applications to run. Work from specifications drawn up by software developers or other individuals. May assist software developers by analyzing user needs and designing software solutions. May develop and write computer programs to store, locate, and retrieve specific documents, data, and information.

Median wage, 2019: $41.61 hourly, $86,550 annual

90th percentile: $164,820

Level 1 Wage:$53.82 hour - $111,946 year
Level 2 Wage:$66.58 hour - $138,486 year
Level 3 Wage:$79.34 hour - $165,027 year
Level 4 Wage:$92.10 hour - $191,568 year
Mean Wage (H-2B):$55.96 hour - $116,397 year

Software developers, systems,  San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA

Definition: Research, design, develop, and test operating systems-level software, compilers, and network distribution software for medical, industrial, military, communications, aerospace, business, scientific, and general computing applications. Set operational specifications and formulate and analyze software requirements. May design embedded systems software. Apply principles and techniques of computer science, engineering, and mathematical analysis.

Median wage: $51.69 hourly, $107,510 annual

90th percentile: $205,590

Mean Wage (H-2B):$69.83 hour - $145,246 year

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: sbutcher@efinancialcareers.com in the first instance. Whatsapp/Signal/Telegram also available. Bear with us if you leave a comment at the bottom of this article: all our comments are moderated by human beings. Sometimes these humans might be asleep, or away from their desks, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. Eventually it will – unless it’s offensive or libelous (in which case it won’t.)

Photo by Frans Vledder on Unsplash

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