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Earnings

Earnings of fishers vary with the season, economy, abundance of fish, market demands, and workers' skills and willingness to stay out at sea. Few fishers receive a fixed wage. Instead, they usually earn percentages of the catch's receipts. In New England, ship owners can receive 50 percent of the catch's receipts. The captain may receive 10 percent, and the crew share the remaining 40 percent. According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, a crew member receiving 6 to 15 percent of the net profit can earn between nothing and tens of thousands of dollars a year. The U.S. Department of Labor reports that fishers earned median salaries of $27,340 in May 2015; earnings ranged from less than $18,760 to $46,390 or more annually. Earnings of fishers are normally highest in the summer and fall, and lowest in the winter. Many fishers supplement their income by working in other activities during the off-season. Fishers must typically provide their own health insurance and other fringe benefits. 

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