Readers guess income of 15 jobs. How close were they?


How much do politicians, paramedics and taxi drivers earn on average?

Our quiz asked readers to hazard their guesses on how much they thought people doing 15 different jobs could expect to take home each year. (If you’d like to take the quiz, check out this link)

More than 25,000 people took up the challenge, and now we have the results. After averaging out all the responses, we thought it would be interesting to see whether the collective wisdom was on point.

So how accurate were everyone’s guesses?

It turns out we underestimate how much politicians earn on average and have a pretty good grasp of how much paramedics take home, but vastly overestimate what taxi drivers bring in.

If the collective guess came within $10,000 of a job’s average income we have given it the “correct” tick. As you can see, people were pretty accurate when it came to pinpointing what pilots, paramedics, teachers and nurses take home.

But on some of the other jobs the guesses were not nearly so on-the-money, as the graphic below shows. The red marker shows a job’s average income, while the orange marker shows the average guess among readers. For some jobs, there is a wide gulf between the two points. iFrameResize({checkOrigin:false},’#pez_iframe9′); var frame = document.getElementById(“pez_iframe9”);

When it comes to taxi drivers, the collective guess of $57,851 was more than twice the actual average income of $24,707.

It is possible the average income figure – calculated from tax office data – understates the amount. For example, it might be that part-time drivers who only work weekends are driving down the average. And, ultimately, the information the ATO receives is self-reported by those lodging their tax returns, which may not be a reflection of an individual’s true earnings.

But it might not be too far off – a 2011 report into the taxi industry in New South Wales found the average driver took home $29,000 a year. And the move towards more contactless payments in recent years means taxi drivers do not get as many tips.

Taxi driver Afzal Ahmad said unfair competition from ride-sharing app Uber had also been driving down earnings. “Competition is good, but it should be fair,” he said.

He said about $58,000 was what taxi drivers might have earned in a good year before Uber was around. Nowadays, cabbies could expect an annual income between $45,000 and $50,000, he said.

Quiz takers also slightly over-estimated what footballers earn. That may be because of a disparity across the major codes, or the fact that some of their biggest stars can command massive salaries.

But on the flipside, the collective guess thought members of parliament were earning $35,000 less on average than they actually are.

Using this interactive, you can check out the distribution of guesses for a selected job. The green area shows the range that would have roughly been classed as a correct answer in the quiz. <a href=’#’><img alt=’Dashboard 1 ‘ src=’https://public.tableau苏州美甲学校/static/images/qu/quizanswers/Dashboard1/1_rss.png’ style=’border: none’ /></a> var divElement = document.getElementById(‘viz1495518212874’); var vizElement = divElement.getElementsByTagName(‘object’)[0];’324px’;’654px’;’100%’;’629px’;’929px’;*0.75)+’px’; var scriptElement = document.createElement(‘script’); scriptElement.src = ‘https://public.tableau苏州美甲学校/javascripts/api/viz_v1.js’; vizElement.parentNode.insertBefore(scriptElement, vizElement);