Tennessee is a tourist mecca as the home to Memphis and Nashville. But as a Tennessean, you have the land of nation’s most famous park, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, as well as 53 other state parks spanning approximately 132,000 acres, in your backyard.
Tennessee is the 16th most populous and the 30th largest by area in the nation. The state’s major industries include tourism, manufacturing (chemicals, transportation and electrical equipment) and agriculture (poultry, soybeans and cattle as the major ag products).
The median household income in Tennessee in 2019 was $53,320, compared with $62,843 as the U.S. median household income, according to the U.S. Census. But one benefit to living in Tennessee is that the state doesn’t tax earned wages. Formerly, taxes were levied on investment income and interest, but that tax was repealed on Jan. 1, 2021.
If you’re looking to pursue a career in finance or financial planning in Tennessee, there are a few considerations. There currently are 1,499 Certified Financial Planners in the state of Tennessee, which represents 1.7% of the number of CFPs nationwide, according to the CFP Board.
CFPs are fiduciaries, which means that they are required to act in the best interest of their clients rather than in their business interest. If you’re planning to do business in Tennessee, you’ll have to decide whether to work as a fee-based advisor, charging clients fees based on the assets under management, or a commission-based agent, earning commission off the sales of products and services.
We have salary data from the BLS for financial advisors, stockbrokers and insurance agents for the regions of Chattanooga, Clarksville, Johnson City, Kingsport-Bristol, Knoxville, Memphis, Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro, North Central Tennessee nonmetropolitan area, South Central Tennessee nonmetropolitan area and the West Tennessee nonmetropolitan area.
Financial Advisor Salary in Tennessee
Annual mean salaries for financial advisors in Tennessee start at $61,220 in the South Central Tennessee nonmetropolitan area and are highest, at $102,090, in Johnson City. The metropolitan regions of Memphis and Chattanooga are next highest at $92,570 and $88,290, respectively. For highly experienced advisors making in the 90th percentile in Tennessee, the annual compensation has a $100Kk spread, ranging from $99,470 in south Central Tennessee to $195,580 in Memphis.
Stockbroker Salary in Tennessee
Stockbrokers in Tennessee make less than their counterparts in financial planning, with the lowest annual mean salary earned in the North Central Tennessee nonmetropolitan area at $43,380. The highest annual salary is in Memphis at $106,520. For experienced advisors in the 75th percentile, the highest paying region is still Memphis with brokers earning $156,470 per year and the North Central region rounding out the lowest salary median in the low-$50K range.
Life/Annuity Producer Salary in Tennessee
The annual salaries for insurance agents in Tennessee follow the same trends as those of stockbrokers in that the higher salaries can be found in Memphis and Knoxville at $70,050 and $61,290, respectively, with the lowest salary of $38,590 found in the West Tennessee nonmetropolitan area, which corresponds to hourly median wages of $24.41, $22.37 and $17.16. Keep in mind that the hourly rates don’t reflect the rates charged to clients but are a breakdown of the annual salaries.
(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.)