Missouri is a haven for those who want it both ways: Quiet country living with big-city amenities. The cultural hubs of St. Louis and Kansas City, located on the east and west sides of the state, offer world-class healthcare and a diverse and vibrant culture, plus world-famous barbecue. Most people find Missouri an affordable place to live, and the state had the sixth-lowest cost of living in the United States in 2020. Residents like to brag that Missouri has more miles of coastline than California, with plenty of outdoor recreation, nature preserves and parks to enjoy.
Missouri employs a graduated-rate income tax, ranging from 0% at the low end to 5.4% for the highest earners. There are no county or city income taxes, and the state sales tax is a flat 4.25%. The average household income in Missouri is $57K/year, well below the national household average of $63K/year. That poorer population is something to consider for finance professionals. Despite that, about 1,641 certified financial planners practice in Missouri, according to the CFP board, accounting for nearly 2% of the population. Most are concentrated in the major cities of St. Louis and Kansas City, but a surprising number find a lucrative client base in the more rural and remote areas of the state.
The tables below show salary estimates and breakdowns for annual and hourly earnings for finance professionals across key markets in Missouri, per 2019 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The hourly data is for illustrative purposes only, and it’s exceedingly rare for finance professionals to charge by the hour. Most charge either a flat fee to clients for handling their money, or they build a commission structure into client contracts. Being a CFP requires you to be a fiduciary, which means advisors must act on behalf of their clients and not advise based on your own self-interest, commission, products or services.
Read on to get an idea of salary prospects for different financial planners and advisors, stockbrokers, and life/annuity producers (insurance sales agents) in key markets of the Show-Me state.
Financial Advisor Salary in Missouri
About 5,500 financial advisors, certified or otherwise, live and work in Minnesota. The vast majority are concentrated in the major cities on the east and west sides of the state: St. Louis and Kansas City. More than 2,000 financial advisors practice in each city, compared to 30-50 in the most rural communities. Salaries hover around $95K–$108K/year in the major cities. Interestingly, the highest reported salaries by both average and 90th percentile are found in the central Missouri nonmetropolitan area.
Stockbroker Salary in Missouri
Stockbrokers sell securities, commodities and financial services directly to clients. The majority work in the two major cities of St. Louis and Kansas City—about 4,000 and 5,700, respectively. You’ll find the highest salaries in Kansas City and the southeast nonmetropolitan area, breaking six figures on average and reaching 130-140 at the 75th percentile. The triple-digit salary in the 90th percentile for the north Missouri nonmetropolitan area indicates significant earning potential for some agents in these smaller markets. Find more detailed data in the table below.
Life/Annuity Producer Salary in Missouri
Life/annuity producers are agents who sell insurance directly to clients. It tends to be less lucrative than financial planning or selling commodities, but some agents can make six figures in the right market. In Missouri, the top-paying metro regions for insurance agents are Columbia with a mean annual salary of $65,620, Springfield with a salary of $65,490 and St. Louis with an annual salary of $64,570. Find the full data set in the table below.
(Salary and job growth data reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in May 2019 for personal financial advisors; securities, commodities and financial services sales agents; and insurance sales agents. Figures represent national data, not school-specific information. Conditions in your area may vary. Information accessed February 2021.)