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Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics
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Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2020

33-9021 Private Detectives and Investigators

Gather, analyze, compile, and report information regarding individuals or organizations to clients, or detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishment.


National estimates for Private Detectives and Investigators
Industry profile for Private Detectives and Investigators
Geographic profile for Private Detectives and Investigators

National estimates for Private Detectives and Investigators:

Employment estimate and mean wage estimates for Private Detectives and Investigators:

Employment (1) Employment
RSE (3)
Mean hourly
wage
Mean annual
wage (2)
Wage RSE (3)
32,200 8.5 % $ 28.89 $ 60,100 3.7 %

Percentile wage estimates for Private Detectives and Investigators:

Percentile 10% 25% 50%
(Median)
75% 90%
Hourly Wage $ 15.12 $ 18.46 $ 25.64 $ 35.19 $ 46.61
Annual Wage (2) $ 31,440 $ 38,400 $ 53,320 $ 73,190 $ 96,950


Industry profile for Private Detectives and Investigators:

Industries with the highest published employment and wages for Private Detectives and Investigators are provided. For a list of all industries with employment in Private Detectives and Investigators, see the Create Customized Tables function.

Industries with the highest levels of employment in Private Detectives and Investigators:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Investigation and Security Services 12,340 1.34 $ 28.51 $ 59,300
Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals (OEWS Designation) 1,810 0.03 $ 31.29 $ 65,090
Legal Services 1,710 0.15 $ 30.62 $ 63,690
Credit Intermediation and Related Activities (5221 and 5223 only) 1,520 0.07 $ 31.99 $ 66,530
Management of Companies and Enterprises 1,450 0.06 $ 30.07 $ 62,550

Industries with the highest concentration of employment in Private Detectives and Investigators:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Investigation and Security Services 12,340 1.34 $ 28.51 $ 59,300
Nondepository Credit Intermediation 1,150 0.20 $ 30.51 $ 63,460
Legal Services 1,710 0.15 $ 30.62 $ 63,690
Couriers and Express Delivery Services 1,110 0.14 $ 34.26 $ 71,270
Rail Transportation 190 0.09 $ 30.32 $ 63,060

Top paying industries for Private Detectives and Investigators:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution 110 0.03 $ 44.66 $ 92,900
Securities, Commodity Contracts, and Other Financial Investments and Related Activities 40 (7) $ 38.58 $ 80,240
Insurance Carriers 180 0.02 $ 36.75 $ 76,440
Building Material and Supplies Dealers 50 (7) $ 35.50 $ 73,840
Couriers and Express Delivery Services 1,110 0.14 $ 34.26 $ 71,270


Geographic profile for Private Detectives and Investigators:

States and areas with the highest published employment, location quotients, and wages for Private Detectives and Investigators are provided. For a list of all areas with employment in Private Detectives and Investigators, see the Create Customized Tables function.





States with the highest employment level in Private Detectives and Investigators:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
California 3,340 0.20 0.88 $ 33.82 $ 70,350
Virginia 2,510 0.68 2.92 $ 25.38 $ 52,790
Texas 2,220 0.18 0.79 $ 32.42 $ 67,420
Pennsylvania 1,940 0.35 1.52 $ 23.65 $ 49,200
Illinois 1,760 0.31 1.35 $ 31.57 $ 65,670




States with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Private Detectives and Investigators:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Delaware 320 0.75 3.22 $ 32.99 $ 68,620
Virginia 2,510 0.68 2.92 $ 25.38 $ 52,790
Pennsylvania 1,940 0.35 1.52 $ 23.65 $ 49,200
Connecticut 530 0.34 1.49 $ 28.04 $ 58,320
Illinois 1,760 0.31 1.35 $ 31.57 $ 65,670




Top paying states for Private Detectives and Investigators:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Arkansas 140 0.12 0.52 $ 37.49 $ 77,980
Alaska 60 0.21 0.89 $ 34.69 $ 72,150
California 3,340 0.20 0.88 $ 33.82 $ 70,350
Delaware 320 0.75 3.22 $ 32.99 $ 68,620
Texas 2,220 0.18 0.79 $ 32.42 $ 67,420





Metropolitan areas with the highest employment level in Private Detectives and Investigators:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 1,710 0.57 2.44 $ 26.96 $ 56,090
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 1,260 0.14 0.61 $ 26.43 $ 54,970
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD 760 0.28 1.22 $ 32.08 $ 66,720
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL 700 0.28 1.21 $ 28.13 $ 58,520
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA 640 0.24 1.04 $ 31.53 $ 65,580
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 630 0.17 0.76 (8) (8)
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 520 0.09 0.38 $ 37.35 $ 77,690
Richmond, VA 480 0.76 3.30 $ 23.59 $ 49,070
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 420 0.14 0.61 $ 24.43 $ 50,810
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 410 0.17 0.75 $ 42.57 $ 88,550




Metropolitan areas with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Private Detectives and Investigators:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Fort Collins, CO 270 1.73 7.48 $ 21.95 $ 45,650
Richmond, VA 480 0.76 3.30 $ 23.59 $ 49,070
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 1,710 0.57 2.44 $ 26.96 $ 56,090
Augusta-Richmond County, GA-SC 100 0.46 1.99 $ 22.17 $ 46,120
Lafayette, LA 80 0.43 1.87 $ 21.56 $ 44,840
Springfield, IL 40 0.41 1.78 $ 23.96 $ 49,850
Jacksonville, FL 270 0.39 1.70 $ 28.39 $ 59,050
Nashville-Davidson--Murfreesboro--Franklin, TN 380 0.39 1.68 $ 27.89 $ 58,020
Austin-Round Rock, TX 350 0.33 1.42 $ 29.14 $ 60,600
Crestview-Fort Walton Beach-Destin, FL 30 0.31 1.33 (8) (8)




Top paying metropolitan areas for Private Detectives and Investigators:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 410 0.17 0.75 $ 42.57 $ 88,550
Fresno, CA 50 0.14 0.62 $ 38.09 $ 79,220
Anchorage, AK 30 0.21 0.91 $ 37.48 $ 77,960
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 520 0.09 0.38 $ 37.35 $ 77,690
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA (8) (8) (8) $ 36.74 $ 76,420
Birmingham-Hoover, AL (8) (8) (8) $ 35.07 $ 72,950
Rochester, NY 60 0.13 0.57 $ 34.40 $ 71,550
Salem, OR (8) (8) (8) $ 33.53 $ 69,730
Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY (8) (8) (8) $ 33.41 $ 69,500
Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT (8) (8) (8) $ 32.40 $ 67,380


About May 2020 National, State, Metropolitan, and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

These estimates are calculated with data collected from employers in all industry sectors, all metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas, and all states and the District of Columbia. The top employment and wage figures are provided above. The complete list is available in the downloadable XLS files.

The percentile wage estimate is the value of a wage below which a certain percent of workers fall. The median wage is the 50th percentile wage estimate—50 percent of workers earn less than the median and 50 percent of workers earn more than the median. More about percentile wages.


(1) Estimates for detailed occupations do not sum to the totals because the totals include occupations not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.

(2) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a "year-round, full-time" hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.

(3) The relative standard error (RSE) is a measure of the reliability of a survey statistic. The smaller the relative standard error, the more precise the estimate.

(7) The value is less than .005 percent of industry employment.

(8) Estimate not released.

(9) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.


Other OEWS estimates and related information:

May 2020 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 National Industry-Specific Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2020 Occupation Profiles

Technical Notes

 

Last Modified Date: March 31, 2021