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Do CFEs earn more?

By Liz Gold
October 14, 2010

According to a new study, yes. The study, published in the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners new Compensation Guide for Anti-Fraud professionals, find that CPEs earn nearly 22 percent more than their non-certified colleagues in the anti-fraud profession.

The research is based on the survey responses of more than 3,000 ACFE members (both CFEs and non-CFEs) conducted by an independent research firm in May 2010. This study, for the first time, included data from members of the association outside of the United States.

“What we found most encouraging is how consistent the patterns have remained despite the economic downturn of the past two years,” Simpson said. “The pay advantage for having the CFE credential is as evident and significant as it was in our previous study.”

Findings include:
•    The CFE is especially valuable to forensic accountants, IRS agents, external auditors and management accountants. These were among the top ranking job functions that showed the highest median salary advantage for having the CFE credential, with CFEs earning 39 to 45 percent more than non-CFEs.
•    In the U.S., respondents in almost every geographic region reported that having the CFE credential increased their compensation. CFEs in the northeast U.S. region reported the highest salary premiums, earning 25 percent more than non-CFEs. Outside the U.S., CFEs earned 35 percent more than non-CFEs in the same position.
•    The majority of respondents had five years or more of fraud-related experience. More than 20 percent of the responding CFEs had more than 20 years of fraud-related experience.

To download the full 2010/2011 Compensation Guide for Anti-Fraud Professionals at


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