COBOL Programmer Salary

Average COBOL Programmer Base Salary in the United States

Average Base Salary

$98,952 Per Year

Salary Range: $47,849 to $159,524

COBOL Programmer Salary





$ 98,952






How Much Does a COBOL Programmer Make Per Year in the United States?

The national average salary for a  COBOL Programmer is $98,952 per year in the United States. It can vary depending on the employer and the skills required for that position, but generally, it will be about $98,952 or more annually for a gross salary. Taxes impact salaries, so to get the net salary we’ve crunched the data and gotten the tax information on what the take-home pay would be after the effective income tax rates. 

Technology Used

Microsoft Excel – Spreadsheet software

Microsoft PowerPoint – Presentation software

SAP business and customer relations management software – Enterprise resource planning ERP software

Microsoft Project – Project management software

Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat – Document management software

Microsoft SharePoint – Cloud-based data access and sharing software

Structured query language SQL – Data base user interface and query software

Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop – Graphics or photo imaging software

Knowledge and Expertise

Computers and Electronics


Engineering and Technology

Customer and Personal Service

Administration and Management


Soft Skills


Active Listening

Critical Thinking

Complex Problem Solving

Quality Control Analysis

Reading Comprehension

What is the salary range of a COBOL Programmer?

COBOL Programmer salaries vary depending on the company you work for, your experience level, industry, education, and years of experience. The average annual salary is around $98,952 but a COBOL Programmer can earn a base salary anywhere from $47,849 to $159,524 per year with some companies paying more than others.

Pay ranges on average for a COBOL Programmer job title only vary a good amount, which may mean that there are many opportunities to earn more income in the future regardless of the employers or your location, industry, and experience.

A salary range that varies also means there is ability to move up within the company, as there may be as many opportunities for advancement or to change your job title. This opportunity for  advancement can help with can increase their job satisfaction and motivation.

What are the Highest Salaries for a COBOL Programmer?

The highest COBOL Programmer salaries in the top 10% earn more than $159,524 per year. The salary range for the top 75% – 90% is between and $128,114 and $159,524 annually.

This salary data and salary estimates come from our Average Pay’s salary database of carefully collected and detailed information about pay across many industries and categories, along with different types of labor data.

What are the Lowest Salaries for a COBOL Programmer?

The lowest COBOL Programmer salaries are in the bottom 10% of earners who make less than $47,849 per year. The salary range for the lowest 10% – 25% is between $47,849 and $63,281 annually.   

This salary data and salary estimates come from our Average Pay’s salary database of carefully collected and detailed information about pay across many industries and categories, along with different types of labor data.

What is a Good Salary for a COBOL Programmer?

If we only look at the data for COBOL Programmer salaries and we don’t compare it to any other jobs, a good salary for a COBOL Programmer job would be over $98,952 per year. This is the average salary for this position in the United States. An excellent pay for a COBOL Programmer would be anything over the top 75%, which is $128,114 annually.

How Can I Increase My Salary as a COBOL Programmer?

There are a few ways you can increase your average salary for a profession as a COBOL Programmer. One way is to get promoted to a higher level and take on more duties within your employer. Another way is to gain more experience and skills in your career. You can also try negotiating higher compensation next performance review, when you are up for renewal or starting a new contract with a business.

Finally, you can look for a new job at a different employer that pays more. One thing not to overlook is companies often give their employees incentives and benefits outside of salaries. The total compensation, like healthcare, paid vacation days, 401k matches, bonuses, overtime, professional development, a career path in the company, and other benefits, need to be considered, which can add up to a lot more money than just a salary increase.

What are the Top Paying Industries for a COBOL Programmer?

The top paying industries for a COBOL Programmer job vary depending on the position’s specific responsibilities, employers, and qualifications. However, some common reported high-paying industries for include the following:

  • Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • Computer Systems Design and Related Services
  • Educational Services
  • Management of Companies and Enterprises
  • Information
  • Finance and Insurance

Does a COBOL Programmer Have a Good Quality of Life?

Based on an average 2-bedroom apartment rental price, a COBOL Programmer would pay 15.63% of their monthly take-home pay towards rent. That’s $1,310 per month or $15,720 yearly for a two-bedroom apartment.

The rent is less than 30% of the monthly take-home pay for an COBOL Programmer, which can helps lessen a financial burden and impact their quality of life.

This is because a high rent-to-income ratio would leave less money each month for other expenses, such as food, transportation, recreation, and activities. It can lead to financial stress, impacting overall job satisfaction and motivation.

Considering the cost of living in a city when considering whether to accept a job offer is essential. If the cost of living is too high, it might not be worth it, even if the salary is good.

Does a COBOL Programmer make good money?

 In general, a COBOL Programmer can make a good salary. The national average salary is $52,632 annually which is less than the average COBOL Programmer salary, meaning most earn a livable wage. According to data and labor statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average COBOL Programmer pay is above the median salary.

However, salaries can vary depending on the company you work for, what you are responsible for, education, college degree, work experience, job market, and your experience level. The highest-paid can earn upwards of 159,524 per year, while the lowest-paid income is less than 47,849 annually.

If you want to maximize your earnings as a COBOL Programmer, take on more responsibility, and gain more experience in related skills. Also, build interpersonal skills and strong leadership skills, get a certification in your field and then negotiate for a higher salary next performance review, when you are up for renewal or starting a new contract with a business.

The best thing you can do is develop yourself and gain knowledge. Many courses, additional training, and professional development opportunities in your area can help increase your skills and development in your job or related field.

You can also get your resume reviewed and look for a new employer that will hire and pay more or look for a career change that is hiring and may interest you more.

Salaries are also relative to the cost of living in different parts of the country. For example, the compensation for a COBOL Programmer will need to be higher if it is in or closer to larger cities like New York City or some states like California. The increase in pay in these areas is because of the higher than average cost of living and more interested applicants for employment versus someone living in a small town. With the cost of housing increasing and medical care premium costs, it is essential to ensure you are getting paid what you are worth.

How do I know I’m being paid fairly as a COBOL Programmer?

The easiest way is to see how close your current salary is to the average pay for your position in your state and city. If your income is below the estimated average wage in your area, you can try to negotiate for a raise.

You can use our research and tools to discover the average salary for a COBOL Programmer in your city or region to see if you are being compensated fairly. You may also compare your income to similar jobs and careers to determine whether you are underpaid or overpaid. Lastly, you can set up job alerts to see how the job market trends.

A few other ways you can research whether you’re being paid fairly as a COBOL Programmer is to do a job search to look at job postings for similar positions and see the estimate for the listed salary range. You can also talk to people in your network who have similar jobs and ask them what they earn. Finally, you can try negotiating a higher pay when you are up for renewal, having a performance evaluation, or starting a new contract.

What Factors Determine the Salary of a COBOL Programmer?

The money a COBOL Programmer can make each year greatly depends on a few components that determine an average base salary.

The company you work for is one of the main factors that affect how much a COBOL Programmer earns.

The compensation will also depend on the location, as some states and cities have a higher cost of living than others. Other factors that affect compensation are the number of hours worked, company size, job type, level of experience in your career, and location.