MBA Salaries Rise Worldwide in 2019

GMAC survey shows that new MBAs enjoy greater compensation.

RECENT GRADUATES WITH advanced business degrees are enjoying substantial starting salaries, according to the Business Hiring Report released by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) in partnership with the MBA Career Services & Employer Alliance and the European Foundation for Management Education (EFMD). The report is based on findings from the annual Corporate Recruiters Survey, which includes responses from more than 1,200 employers in 45 countries.

Worldwide, most employers plan to increase MBA starting salaries in 2019, including 63 percent of employers in the Asia Pacific, 56 percent of employers in the U.S., and 49 percent in Europe. Median annual base starting salaries for new hires vary considerably by world region—$95,000 in Europe and $45,000 in the Asia-Pacific region.

The median annual base starting salary U.S. employers plan to offer new MBA hires in 2019 is US$115,000, more than double the median for new bachelor’s degree hires ($55,000) and the highest ever recorded in the U.S. when adjusted for inflation. By industry among U.S. employers, median MBA starting salaries are highest in the consulting ($135,000) and finance/accounting ($125,000) industries.

U.S. companies report international hiring plans that are similar to last year, with 48 percent saying they are willing to hire international candidates in 2019. However, survey responses were gathered before the recent H-1B visa rule change became effective; that change could benefit international students with advanced degrees from U.S. schools.

At the same time, 71 percent of respondents in Europe and 69 percent of those in the Asia Pacific report a willingness to hire international candidates in 2019, both up from recent years.

MBA Career Goals 

For more details on GMAC reports, visit gmac.org and click on the MarketIntelligence tab.

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