The Future of Actuarial Salaries (SOA)

What do you guys feel the future of the actuarial field is in terms of salary?

When I was first hired 5 years ago, I started at ~70k. Now that I am involved in hiring discussions, I am surprised to see that this is about what we are paying our EL now. With all of the SOA changes designed to make credentialing easier, salaries should drop based on a basic supply and demand argument, assuming the number of fellows increases faster than the number of jobs.

Eventually, I would think these newer (in real terms) starting salaries will trickle up to the associate and fellow levels, which will depress actuarial pay, similar to what happened in Canada. Do you agree that this is the case, or at the manager and above level should it stay about the same in real terms as it is now? DWS does not seem to archive their old surveys so I do not have that data on hand to look at

My sense has been that actuarial is a pretty middle of the road office job from entry level (arguably even worse than middle given its competitiveness) and then gets a lot more lucrative at and beyond ACAS, meaning a total comp that is multiples of entry level and more interesting work. Not to mention fantastic work/life balance.

Id bet this pattern will continue, but youve got to make your own career bet.


Canadians get paid less in general and I think the pay gap between Americans and Canadians is starting to really widen so I wouldn’t really use them as a basis for comparison

But yeah I’m not a huge fan of the SOA diluting the value of the FSA credential by opening the floodgates so to speak

I’m curious what the pass rates on those new FSA exam replacement courses in 2025 will look like. Anything above 60% and it’s over

I feel like it should be a requirement to have your FSA credentials to make executive SOA decisions. It’s like when mba grads run hospitals and health outcomes plummet


this isn’t happening.

Totally support this. The people running the show (executive director / CEO) are serving the Society, not the membership.

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Another thing is It is also odd that under thew new system having FSA is not enough too sign things-will still require some sort of additional requirement beyond FSA

I fail to see how it is easier than the system right before it-7 Exams and 3 FSA Exams on a specific track is harder than all these UEC & take-home Exams for ASA and FSA Exams with shorter Syllabus material-exams are going to be based on 2.5 hours of material now. Also simply offering them more frequently will make it easier to get FSA

Could be that lower pay for students won’t trickle up-students don’t do a whole lot at first and are given time to study, but

Lower Initial Salaries + Same Exam Raises should ultimately lead to lower New FSA Salaries

Meh, ultimately youll get paid on supply and demand pressures, not entry plus fixed exam raises.

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It will be curious to watch ACAS/FCAS vs. ASA/FSA salaries over time. My understanding is that CAS exams were already considered more difficult, prior to CAS making the exams more difficult and SOA making them easier.

Not intending to mock the CAS CBT testing failures by saying the exams are more difficult. The mockery about that is only in the prior sentence.

2 things,

  1. you can use wayback to find prior versions of the salary survey
  2. You can find prior years’ survey on the actuary subreddit
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In general actuaries at life insurance companies bring in the big bucks

Health and pensions drag the average down

P&c is somewhere in between

I don’t expect this trend to change any time soon or be impacted by the credentialing process

As someone who has passed both CAS and SOA exams I can confidently say that all of these exams are easy, you just gotta study. So I find it mind blowing that the credentialing bodies want to make it even easier than it already is

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50k was an average EL salary back in 2000.

I thought i saw or heard that new exam takers around 2010 were near double the 2000 number, but that has since reverted back to the earlier levels. My sense is it has become harder to find EL candidates recently and salaries may become more competitive.

Wait i thought we were superior though

Le p&c!

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I can confirm that it is hard to find good EL candidates right now (personable and sharp)

We offer college grads starting pay of $85-90k based on number of exams and 0-1 internships

I think this profession has begun attracting an odd asocial crowd. Basically the stereotypical actuary who can’t hold a conversation/communicate in general

It’s heart breaking

Is having 2 exams and a personality too much to ask for from an EL candidate?!?!!!

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I think it is partially due to the high concentration of life insurance titans in the NYC area (guardian, Munich, NYL, MetLife) propping up life insurer pay

Thank you for making me feel better about my choices

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I’m here for you fam

As I cry in health insurance pay

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I sometimes describe people to my wife as how “actuarial” they are

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Never go full actuary


lol…the actuarial profession has begun attracting stereotypical actuarial types.

I think that bubble of people around 2010 probably included less nerdy but less successful at exams type people. Didn’t we create data science for them to work in?

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I was told to go full actuary as soon as possible. I did my best.

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