How Much Money Do California Pharmacists Make in a Year?


California was the second highest-paying state in the nation for pharmacists, according to 2013 data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The average salary for pharmacists working in the United States is $116,500, but California pharmacists earn significantly more than this. California pharmacist salaries vary based on the city you live in, your level of experience and your employer.

What You Can Earn

  • According to the BLS, pharmacists working in California earned an average of $129,560. Four metropolitan areas in California were in the top 10 highest-paying locations in the nation for pharmacists. This includes the Santa Cruz-Watsonville, California, area, where pharmacists earned $151,270 in 2013, making this location the second highest-paying metropolitan area in the United States. Salaries were also high in El Centro, California, with an average of $147,740, and in Chico, California, with an average salary of $139,840. Fresno, California, rounds out the list, with an average of $136,140 in 2013.

Earnings by Experience Level

  • According to the State of California Employment Development Department, entry-level pharmacists in the state earned an average of $124,603 in 2014 and experienced pharmacists had an average salary of $147,963.

Pharmacist Pay by Work Place

  • According to Glassdoor, a pharmacist job at Kaiser Permanente in Los, Angeles, California, offered an annual salary of $117,561 at the time of publication. Salaries are even higher at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where a pharmacist can earn a yearly salary of $137,302. At Target in Los Angeles, pharmacists earn an average of $139,290. Pharmacist salaries are modest at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs in Los Angeles, where pharmacists earn $97,736 at the time of publication.

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