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Economists Career

Career Description

Conduct research, prepare reports, or formulate plans to address economic problems related to the production and distribution of goods and services or monetary and fiscal policy. May collect and process economic and statistical data using sampling techniques and econometric methods.

What Job Titles Economists Might Have

  • Economic Analyst
  • Economist
  • Professor
  • Professor of Economics

What Economists Do

  • Teach theories, principles, and methods of economics.
  • Study economic and statistical data in area of specialization, such as finance, labor, or agriculture.
  • Conduct research on economic issues and disseminate research findings through technical reports or scientific articles in journals.
  • Compile, analyze, and report data to explain economic phenomena and forecast market trends, applying mathematical models and statistical techniques.
  • Study the socioeconomic impacts of new public policies, such as proposed legislation, taxes, services, and regulations.
  • Supervise research projects and students' study projects.
  • Formulate recommendations, policies, or plans to solve economic problems or to interpret markets.
  • Develop economic guidelines and standards and prepare points of view used in forecasting trends and formulating economic policy.
  • Provide advice and consultation on economic relationships to businesses, public and private agencies, and other employers.
  • Forecast production and consumption of renewable resources and supply, consumption, and depletion of non-renewable resources.
  • Testify at regulatory or legislative hearings concerning the estimated effects of changes in legislation or public policy and present recommendations based on cost-benefit analyses.

What Economists Should Be Good At

  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Mathematical Reasoning - The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).

What Economists Should Be Interested In

  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

What Economists Need to Learn

  • Economics and Accounting - Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Diploma iconThis career requires a graduate degree.
Median Salary: $101,050

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.