Lowest-paying jobs in Merced

Written by:
June 20, 2022
Pxhere

Lowest-paying jobs in Merced

The U.S. may be one of the wealthiest countries in the world but there’s a growing trend of financial inequality, with middle-class households feeling the most impact. In fact, the number of adults who live in middle-class households dropped from 61% in 1971 to 50% in 2021, according to an April 2022 analysis from Pew Research Center. On the other hand, the upper-income level rose from 14% to 21%. The declining middle class in the U.S. can be attributed to various factors including a decrease in unions and manufacturing jobs and an increased need for college-educated, tech-savvy employees.

The COVID-19 pandemic also played a major role in exposing the harsh financial gap as those who fell under the middle- and upper-income brackets were able to keep their jobs and/or work remotely. At the start of the pandemic in the U.S., workers who fell under the lower-income tier found themselves unemployed or having to be out of work, even if temporarily, as their place of employment was closed.

Those who worked in the leisure and hospitality industries were hit the hardest financially. In December 2020, employment in the hospitality industry was down by 23% compared to pre-pandemic levels in February 2020, an unemployment rate that surpassed other industries. Service employees such as housekeepers, food preparation workers, kitchen cooks, automobile glass installers, and animal caretakers were some of the lowest-paying jobs in the nation.

Stacker compiled a list of the lowest-paying jobs in Merced, CA, using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Jobs are ranked by average annual salary with information up to date as of May 2021.

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Dmitry Kalinovsky // Shutterstock

#50. Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $38,380
- #340 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 300

National
- Annual mean salary: $44,810
- Employment: 551,380
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Odessa, TX ($70,950)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($66,260)
--- Bismarck, ND ($64,940)
2 / 50
DuxX // Shutterstock

#49. Packaging and filling machine operators and tenders

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $38,180
- #93 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 960

National
- Annual mean salary: $36,750
- Employment: 358,640
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Battle Creek, MI ($60,150)
--- Albany, GA ($53,570)
--- Fort Collins, CO ($50,590)
3 / 50
Ruslan Galiullin // Shutterstock

#48. Office clerks, general

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $38,130
- #162 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,080

National
- Annual mean salary: $38,990
- Employment: 2,578,180
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($49,980)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($49,740)
--- Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO ($48,850)
4 / 50
Oksana Shufrych // Shutterstock

#47. Recreation workers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $38,080
- #11 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 80

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,020
- Employment: 264,020
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Fairbanks, AK ($50,710)
--- Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI ($45,730)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($44,200)
5 / 50
ESB Basic // Shutterstock

#46. Customer service representatives

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $38,020
- #141 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 670

National
- Annual mean salary: $39,070
- Employment: 2,787,070
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($52,630)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($50,510)
--- Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH ($47,490)

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Rusty Clark ~ 100K Photos // Flickr

#45. Counter and rental clerks

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $37,840
- #87 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 210

National
- Annual mean salary: $36,170
- Employment: 371,620
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Urban Honolulu, HI ($48,760)
--- Fairbanks, AK ($47,080)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($45,760)
7 / 50
ALPA PROD // Shutterstock

#44. Medical secretaries and administrative assistants

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $37,320
- #158 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 410

National
- Annual mean salary: $39,740
- Employment: 656,640
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($56,010)
--- Napa, CA ($52,630)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($52,300)
8 / 50
Unsplash

#43. Janitors and cleaners, except maids and housekeeping cleaners

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $36,810
- #26 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,010

National
- Annual mean salary: $31,860
- Employment: 2,036,680
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($42,030)
--- Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH ($41,240)
--- Barnstable Town, MA ($41,150)
9 / 50
Crew // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Bartenders

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $36,400
- #48 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 90

National
- Annual mean salary: $30,340
- Employment: 485,330
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI ($50,180)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($47,820)
--- Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ ($47,440)
10 / 50
Syda Productions // Shutterstock

#41. Tellers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $36,380
- #76 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 170

National
- Annual mean salary: $34,930
- Employment: 364,210
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($45,040)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($43,490)
--- Napa, CA ($42,000)

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Pixabay

#40. Parts salespersons

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $36,330
- #178 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 170

National
- Annual mean salary: $36,920
- Employment: 265,130
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($48,330)
--- Danville, IL ($48,080)
--- Barnstable Town, MA ($47,620)
12 / 50
Paul.J.West // Shutterstock

#39. Teaching assistants, except postsecondary

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $36,120
- #54 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,330

National
- Annual mean salary: $31,760
- Employment: 1,187,270
- Entry level education requirements: Some college, no degree
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($46,390)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($45,080)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($42,820)
13 / 50
Canva

#38. Farmworkers, farm, ranch, and aquacultural animals

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $36,030
- #22 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 220

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,150
- Employment: 34,140
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($42,780)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($42,120)
--- Provo-Orem, UT ($41,660)
14 / 50
The Boston Globe // Getty Images

#37. Stockers and order fillers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,840
- #36 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,370

National
- Annual mean salary: $33,020
- Employment: 2,451,430
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($42,240)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($41,960)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($40,620)
15 / 50
Needpix

#36. Crushing, grinding, and polishing machine setters, operators, and tenders

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,830
- #113 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 50

National
- Annual mean salary: $42,790
- Employment: 31,800
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Bakersfield, CA ($59,170)
--- Duluth, MN-WI ($57,420)
--- Amarillo, TX ($55,250)

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Canva

#35. Tire repairers and changers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,790
- #43 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 70

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,520
- Employment: 93,180
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Urban Honolulu, HI ($44,520)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($43,520)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($43,370)
17 / 50
Pixabay

#34. Laborers and freight, stock, and material movers, hand

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,510
- #115 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,130

National
- Annual mean salary: $34,950
- Employment: 2,729,010
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($44,210)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($43,230)
--- Fairbanks, AK ($42,590)
18 / 50
Jorge Royan // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Cooks, restaurant

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,420
- #45 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 300

National
- Annual mean salary: $31,630
- Employment: 1,193,860
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI ($43,900)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($43,380)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($41,690)
19 / 50
Krakenimages.com // Shutterstock

#32. Childcare workers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,360
- #10 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 270

National
- Annual mean salary: $27,680
- Employment: 438,520
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($39,390)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($39,120)
--- Napa, CA ($36,850)
20 / 50
Africa Studio // Shutterstock

#31. Shuttle drivers and chauffeurs

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,310
- #42 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 100

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,570
- Employment: 175,660
- Entry level education requirements: not available
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($43,740)
--- Napa, CA ($42,730)
--- New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($42,000)

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Monkey Business Images // Shutterstock

#30. Waiters and waitresses

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $35,270
- #61 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 420

National
- Annual mean salary: $29,010
- Employment: 1,804,030
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Glens Falls, NY ($47,570)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($47,080)
--- Ithaca, NY ($44,970)
22 / 50
Canva

#29. Pharmacy aides

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,890
- #40 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 40

National
- Annual mean salary: $34,560
- Employment: 43,560
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($59,160)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($57,630)
--- Santa Rosa, CA ($56,450)
23 / 50
Sean Rayford // Getty Images

#28. Security guards

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,860
- #140 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 340

National
- Annual mean salary: $35,830
- Employment: 1,057,100
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Idaho Falls, ID ($70,350)
--- San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande, CA ($58,440)
--- Kennewick-Richland, WA ($55,500)
24 / 50
GagliardiPhotography // Shutterstock

#27. Nursing assistants

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,850
- #78 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 350

National
- Annual mean salary: $33,250
- Employment: 1,314,830
- Entry level education requirements: Postsecondary nondegree award
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($47,690)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($47,500)
--- Salinas, CA ($44,210)
25 / 50
zhu difeng // Shutterstock

#26. Merchandise displayers and window trimmers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,760
- #144 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 60

National
- Annual mean salary: $35,520
- Employment: 159,790
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($45,950)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($45,550)
--- Portland-South Portland, ME ($44,840)

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26 / 50
Milkovasa // Shutterstock

#25. Medical assistants

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,550
- #235 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 490

National
- Annual mean salary: $38,190
- Employment: 727,760
- Entry level education requirements: Postsecondary nondegree award
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($58,670)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($54,930)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($53,870)
27 / 50
viviandnguyen_ // Flickr

#24. Packers and packagers, hand

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,460
- #24 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 460

National
- Annual mean salary: $30,950
- Employment: 585,270
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($38,960)
--- Rome, GA ($38,830)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($38,460)
28 / 50
PxHere

#23. Library assistants, clerical

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,340
- #56 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 50

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,490
- Employment: 78,470
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($53,770)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($52,500)
--- Santa Rosa, CA ($49,030)
29 / 50
Canva

#22. Agricultural equipment operators

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,150
- #50 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 130

National
- Annual mean salary: $36,280
- Employment: 26,180
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Dubuque, IA ($45,450)
--- Wichita, KS ($45,340)
--- Kansas City, MO-KS ($45,240)
30 / 50
New Africa // Shutterstock

#21. Receptionists and information clerks

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $34,060
- #72 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 300

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,910
- Employment: 983,150
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($45,080)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($44,680)
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($41,290)

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Canva

#20. Bakers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $33,790
- #75 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 90

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,300
- Employment: 181,800
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($41,850)
--- Chattanooga, TN-GA ($41,660)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($41,160)
32 / 50
Canva

#19. Helpers--production workers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $33,590
- #146 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 120

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,910
- Employment: 202,860
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Lafayette-West Lafayette, IN ($48,190)
--- Pittsfield, MA ($43,910)
--- Reno, NV ($41,940)
33 / 50
Canva

#18. Food preparation workers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $33,380
- #38 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 330

National
- Annual mean salary: $28,810
- Employment: 783,350
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($39,950)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($39,230)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($38,340)
34 / 50
Nejron Photo // Shutterstock

#17. Cleaners of vehicles and equipment

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $33,260
- #42 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 490

National
- Annual mean salary: $30,550
- Employment: 351,960
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($40,840)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($38,980)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($38,780)
35 / 50
VGstockstudio // Shutterstock

#16. Food servers, nonrestaurant

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $33,210
- #32 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 80

National
- Annual mean salary: $29,500
- Employment: 243,030
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Napa, CA ($46,270)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($43,930)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($43,400)

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36 / 50
Monkey Business Images // Shutterstock

#15. Retail salespersons

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $32,810
- #103 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,690

National
- Annual mean salary: $31,920
- Employment: 3,693,490
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($41,150)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($41,150)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($38,790)
37 / 50
Pressmaster // Shutterstock

#14. Animal caretakers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $32,740
- #46 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 60

National
- Annual mean salary: $29,520
- Employment: 225,680
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($40,460)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($39,720)
--- Salinas, CA ($37,420)
38 / 50
Pearl PhotoPix // Shutterstock

#13. Hairdressers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $32,320
- #191 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 70

National
- Annual mean salary: $35,990
- Employment: 285,980
- Entry level education requirements: Postsecondary nondegree award
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Kalamazoo-Portage, MI ($53,630)
--- Lansing-East Lansing, MI ($53,470)
--- Barnstable Town, MA ($52,630)
39 / 50
Canva

#12. Automotive and watercraft service attendants

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $32,220
- #61 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 50

National
- Annual mean salary: $29,960
- Employment: 111,480
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Urban Honolulu, HI ($50,340)
--- Fairbanks, AK ($41,840)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($39,120)
40 / 50
aboutsung // Shutterstock

#11. Dining room and cafeteria attendants and bartender helpers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $31,440
- #47 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 90

National
- Annual mean salary: $27,690
- Employment: 336,970
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($38,490)
--- Ithaca, NY ($38,170)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($37,910)

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41 / 50
Rawpixel.com // Shutterstock

#10. Maids and housekeeping cleaners

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $31,280
- #72 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 270

National
- Annual mean salary: $29,580
- Employment: 723,430
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI ($45,430)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($44,940)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($44,580)
42 / 50
Unsplash

#9. Amusement and recreation attendants

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $31,080
- #24 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 70

National
- Annual mean salary: $26,110
- Employment: 262,170
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI ($37,560)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($36,800)
--- Anchorage, AK ($36,020)
43 / 50
Dean Drobot // Shutterstock

#8. Cashiers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $30,880
- #42 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 2,620

National
- Annual mean salary: $26,780
- Employment: 3,335,170
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($37,860)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($36,910)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($35,400)
44 / 50
Canva

#7. Farmworkers and laborers, crop, nursery, and greenhouse

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $30,840
- #114 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 4,990

National
- Annual mean salary: $31,440
- Employment: 277,200
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($42,490)
--- Urban Honolulu, HI ($40,560)
--- Ithaca, NY ($39,570)
45 / 50
Canva

#6. Physical therapist aides

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $30,620
- #68 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 30

National
- Annual mean salary: $30,370
- Employment: 42,390
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Santa Rosa, CA ($45,060)
--- Jackson, MS ($42,210)
--- Urban Honolulu, HI ($40,510)

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Pxhere

#5. Fast food and counter workers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $30,510
- #40 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 2,090

National
- Annual mean salary: $26,060
- Employment: 3,095,120
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($37,090)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($36,360)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($34,240)
47 / 50
Gabriel Georgescu // Shutterstock

#4. Hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $30,350
- #67 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 70

National
- Annual mean salary: $28,040
- Employment: 220,380
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI ($52,150)
--- Urban Honolulu, HI ($48,900)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($39,910)
48 / 50
Daniel Lee // Flickr

#3. Cooks, fast food

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $30,130
- #50 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 860

National
- Annual mean salary: $25,490
- Employment: 768,130
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Urban Honolulu, HI ($36,820)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($36,640)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($35,040)
49 / 50
Smash the Iron Cage // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Slaughterers and meat packers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $30,070
- #43 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 640

National
- Annual mean salary: $32,010
- Employment: 86,450
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI ($40,850)
--- Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO ($39,300)
--- Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA ($39,050)
50 / 50
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#1. Dishwashers

Merced, CA
- Annual mean salary: $29,790
- #58 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 140

National
- Annual mean salary: $27,350
- Employment: 377,040
- Entry level education requirements: No formal educational credential
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($37,560)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($37,200)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($36,440)

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