Work Tasks

ECONOMISTS study how society distributes resources such as land, labor, raw materials, and machinery to produce goods and services. They do research, collect and analyze data, monitor economic trends, and develop forecasts. They research energy costs, inflation, interest rates, imports, employment levels, and other issues. They advise businesses, such as insurance companies, banks, securities firms, labor unions, trade associations, and government agencies. They use mathematical models to help predict the nature and length of business cycles, effects of inflation on the economy, or effects of tax legislation on unemployment levels.

Salary, Size & Growth

Entry Requirements

Graduate training is required for most private sector ECONOMIST jobs, and for advancement to higher positions. A Ph.D. is necessary for teaching in colleges and universities, and for top positions in many companies. A bachelor's degree with a major in economics is excellent preparation for many entry-level positions as research assistants, or management trainees. In the federal government, applicants for entry-level positions must have a bachelor's degree. Additional courses and/or superior academic performance are likely to be required to gain employment.