Ben Bernanke Addresses the Media

Economists are concerned with how society uses resources such as land, labor, raw materials, and machinery to produce goods and services for consumption and production in the present and future. Economists study how economic systems address three basic questions: "What shall we produce?" "How shall we produce it?" and "For whom shall we produce it?" The economist then compiles, processes, and interprets the answers to these questions. There are about 19,090 economists employed in the United States.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Agricultural Economists, Econometricians, Environmental Economists, Financial Economists, Government Economists, Industrial Organization Economists, International Economists, Labor Economists, Public Finance Economists
Duties Study the production and distribution of goods, resources, and services
Salary Range $25,000 to $100,000+
Work Environment Primarily Indoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities are available throughout the country, but employment is concentrated in large cities
Minimum Education Level
  • Master's Degree
School Subjects
  • Business
  • Economics
  • Mathematics
Experience Participating in internships and fellowships during college will be useful
Personality Traits
  • Organized
  • Realistic
  • Technical
  • Computer
  • Financial
  • Organizational
Certification or Licensing None
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Good
Advancement Prospects Fair
Outlook About as Fast as the Average
Career Ladder
  • Professor, or Manager, or Project Head
  • Experienced Economist
  • Entry-Level Economist