# How much money do Physicists make?

for MD/MS starts at 60K a year median would be 400K for physicians and 1000K for surgeons in superspecialities
But not all doctors are this successful, and only some top earners will get these figures, as the system is private practice based. But of course, if you can open your own facility, you will earn a lot more.

jtbell
Mentor
My father makes on average $112,000 an year as a small buisness owner, Silverbackman posted that nearly seven years ago. After inflation in the meantime, it's probably more like$140,000 to $150,000 now. Or maybe he went bankrupt in the Great Recession. In any event, what a particular salary is "worth" to you depends on your family background, the type of lifestyle you currently live or aspire to, and where you live (which country, city, etc.). Even in the US,$150,000 per year "feels" a lot different depending on whether you live in Manhattan, elsewhere in metro NYC, San Francisco Bay area, Chicago, Schenectady New York, Des Moines Iowa, Greenville South Carolina, etc. Also on things like whether you "need" to buy a new car every three years, or keep them until they fall apart; whether you live in a small but comfortable three-bedroom house in a sixty-year-old neighborhood, or in a McMansion in a new development; or whether your idea of a fun vacation is a ski resort in Aspen, eating in 4-5 star restaurants, or a road trip to some scenic/interesting part of the country, staying in budget motels and splitting a foot-long sub at Subway for lunch.

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Regional differences

I was at University of Missouri, Columbia for a year. Cigarette packs were priced differently and there were major price differenced between columbia and NYC.

Staff Emeritus
You are wrong!

$90,000 (in Canada) Lets see. 90,000 x 0.64= 57 600 After tax That is what you get after tax, im not even mentioning living/car expenses. At 90 000, your lucky if you end up with 10 000 in your pocket at the end of the year. 95% of Canadians make less than$89,000 a year.

$90,000 is very good money if you are single and live alone. If that same person got married, bought a house and had 3 kids, and their spouse didn't work outside the home, obviously$90,000 would hardly be luxurious.

Staff Emeritus
It is still more than what 95% of the people make.

It is still more than what 95% of the people make.
Of course, but 95% of Americans don't own a house and support a spouse and 3 kids as in my example. My point is how "good" a salary is depends on what your life circumstances are.

In Italy, I can survive with a spouse and 2 little kids earning a gross of 50k eur, which means 25k net. I have not to pay for the house. Considering escaping to USA, which salary must I search? 100k dollars as a gross is enough? (optics and experimental physics field)

Guys, don't get me wrong. I am just not after the money. If only was then I wouldn't bother on making this thread. I keep telling my parents that it is better to do a job you enjoy than the money but they keep saying it is better to have money.

There a couple of reasons why I myself want more money. One reason is that I want to go into politics later in life and you have to have lots of money to be sucessful in that line. Secondly I want a better life than my parent. My father makes on average $112,000 an year as a small buisness owner, so that is why I judge$90,000 a bit lower. It probably is not bad pay at all, so just because I found out most theoretical physicists maker around that much it doesn't mean becoming that profession is out of my idea.

What if you were to find a major discovery as an theoretical physicist such as a way to travel time ec.t ect. Wouldn't that boose your pay up? There is so much to discover in this line work so it is very likelly I will discover something big. Won't it booste your pay?
What if you majored in physics, and then went into medical physics for grads?

Or you could major in medical physics, right off the bat.

The University of Colorado, Denver, offers a BS in either Physics or Medical Physics. So far, their main differences are that once you get into your 300 and 400 levels, physics is more applied to biology and medical trades, like biophysics.

For example, the physics major will take Electromagnetism while the medical physics major will take bioelectromagnetism.

Look f'yo' self.

Summary of Both Majors:

Course Requirements for the Regular Physics Major:

Course Requirements for the Medical Physics major:

I'm not trying to sell you off to UCD (it's effing expensive), but just letting you know that you might be able to do both physics and the annoying, little, medical side your parents want. I'm also a Coloradan...so that's why I mentioned UCD.

xD

Success is waking up every morning and being able to do whatever you want, and if that thing you want to do happens to be your job, then you have made it.
Wow, this is brilliant :)

If you wanted to, you COULD just go into Applied Physics, go on to work for Wall Street, and just make twice as much as a doctor? As you said, normal doctors make about $200,000 a year (after several years of experience). With the same experience, you could be making$400,000 on Wall Street (probably MUCH more than that to be honest, depending on how efficient you are). A double major in theoretical and applied physics sounds VERY possible. Have fun with wormholes and the like while in college, but then when you go out into the real world and try to get a job, you could go to be a Quant (Quantitative Analyst) or maybe a consultant. That's what I thought of as one of the many plans I have had for my future.

If you wanted to, you COULD just go into Applied Physics, go on to work for Wall Street, and just make twice as much as a doctor? As you said, normal doctors make about $200,000 a year (after several years of experience). With the same experience, you could be making$400,000 on Wall Street (probably MUCH more than that to be honest, depending on how efficient you are). A double major in theoretical and applied physics sounds VERY possible. Have fun with wormholes and the like while in college, but then when you go out into the real world and try to get a job, you could go to be a Quant (Quantitative Analyst) or maybe a consultant. That's what I thought of as one of the many plans I have had for my future.
if you actually looked at applied physics curriculum then it's clear that you're gonna be nowhere near finance if you did what their curriculum and research asked for. are you in college yet?

if you actually looked at applied physics curriculum then it's clear that you're gonna be nowhere near finance if you did what their curriculum and research asked for. are you in college yet?
Quantitative Analysis doesn't have as much to do with money as some of the other fields. Most of Quantitative Analysis is being good with numbers in general. I have done my research and a lot of Wall Street workers have a strong Physics background, especially in Applied Physics because of the way they think. But I learned at RPI that Physics can actually get people really close to Wall Street... Well I already knew this but RPI sort of confirmed it. You just have to be willing to learn the money part, and the Physics looks really good. In recent years, majors are becoming less and less important. In fact, college in general is becoming less important. My best friend's father didn't even go to college and makes millions per year. Well that isn't my point, but the major alone isn't what dictates your career choices. It's your entire background... If you majored in Biology in college, and you had an internship with an artist, then you could end up drawing leaves and bugs if that's what you enjoy... while someone else with a Biology major who took some courses in programming could end up just keeping records for some sort of health insurance company. It depends more in your background and overall goals, as well as your marketability, rather than your major. I say pick a major that you find most desirable, but make it closely related enough to at least some of your intended career paths so that you still have a shot at the career. One course could make the difference between a computer programmer and particle physicist researcher for MIT... or the difference between a game designer and an engineer...
ok... do I talk too much? It's 4:52AM and I just said all this, and I don't even know if half of it makes sense... but oh well

Quantitative Analysis doesn't have as much to do with money as some of the other fields. Most of Quantitative Analysis is being good with numbers in general. I have done my research and a lot of Wall Street workers have a strong Physics background, especially in Applied Physics because of the way they think. But I learned at RPI that Physics can actually get people really close to Wall Street... Well I already knew this but RPI sort of confirmed it. You just have to be willing to learn the money part, and the Physics looks really good. In recent years, majors are becoming less and less important. In fact, college in general is becoming less important. My best friend's father didn't even go to college and makes millions per year. Well that isn't my point, but the major alone isn't what dictates your career choices. It's your entire background... If you majored in Biology in college, and you had an internship with an artist, then you could end up drawing leaves and bugs if that's what you enjoy... while someone else with a Biology major who took some courses in programming could end up just keeping records for some sort of health insurance company. It depends more in your background and overall goals, as well as your marketability, rather than your major. I say pick a major that you find most desirable, but make it closely related enough to at least some of your intended career paths so that you still have a shot at the career. One course could make the difference between a computer programmer and particle physicist researcher for MIT... or the difference between a game designer and an engineer...
ok... do I talk too much? It's 4:52AM and I just said all this, and I don't even know if half of it makes sense... but oh well
Have you ever read a quantitative finance paper?