Is economics a good major? Yes. That's because an economics major can come out of college with a lucrative career ahead of them.
So, how much money do economics majors make? According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), economists earned an average salary of $109,230 in May 2015 — and those who worked for the federal government earned an average of $114,600.
1. Market Research Analyst
A market research analyst can earn about $63,120 per year, or $30.35 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their main job is to "study market conditions to examine potential sales of a product or service," and the job market is looking good — after all, the job outlook for 2018 to 2028 is expected to grow by 20 percent, which is much faster than average.
Of course, having a degree in economics can help you as a market research analyst, since you already understand how the market works.
2. Policy Analyst
Policy analysts earn about $57,025, while the top 10% have most recently earned at least $80,000, and the bottom 10% have earned up to $41,000, according to PayScale. Their position requires them to research and analyze the many different, multifaceted issues that affect the public; they also have to offer up ideas on legislation and intervention.
Having a degree in economics can help you as a policy analyst, as well, since you likely have a grasp on how different policies have affected the economy in the past.
An economist is someone who collects and analyzes data, researches trends and evaluates economic issues for resources, goods and services, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which also reports that economists earn about $104,340 per year or $50.16 per hour. Are economists in demand? The answer is yes. There were 21,000 job openings for economists in 2018.
4. Financial Analyst
A financial analyst is someone who provides financial guidance to clients that can either be businesses or individuals, helping them to make important investment decisions. A financial analyst earns about $85,660 per year, or $41.18 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. There were 329,500 job openings for financial analysts in 2018, and the job is growing at a rate of eight percent, which is faster than average. Financial analysts usually study a subject such as economics in undergraduate school, and likely go on to pursue further education in the field.
5. Credit Analyst
A credit analyst is someone who assesses the risks involved in lending money for companies and individuals who need loans. They calculate the likelihood of borrowers being able to repay debts by analyzing credit histories and financial statements. According to TradeSchools.net, their average salary is about $82,300. Credit analysts usually come out of undergraduate school with a degree in a subject like economics, and they usually go on to pursue further education in the field.
6. Compensation and Benefits Manager
The job of a compensation and benefits manager is to conduct research on compensation statistics and perform market analyses in order to come up with appropriate, adequate salaries and benefits packages for different jobs at the companies for which they work. Their average salary is about $67,910, according to TradeSchools.net.
Lawyers can work in all different fields, but having a degree in economics can be beneficial for most industries as a lawyer. That's because understanding the economy is incredibly important when dealing with a whole host of different cases — nevermind the fact that a degree in economics and a passing grade on the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) will qualify you for law school. Once out of school and employed, lawyers can make about $120,910 per year, or about $58.13 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
An actuary is someone who uses " mathematics, statistics and financial theory to analyze the financial costs of risk and uncertainty," according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which also reports that actuaries earn about $102,880 per year, or $49.46 per hour. The job outlook for actuaries between 2018 and 2028 suggests a 20% increase, which is much faster than average.
9. Personal Financial Advisor
Personal financial advisors can earn about $88,890 per year, or $42.73 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their main job is to "provide advice to help individuals manage their finances and plan for their financial future." And there were 271,700 jobs openings for personal financial advisors in 2018, which means that the job is in demand. Financial advisors usually come out of undergraduate school with a degree in a subject like economics.
10. Management Consultant
A management consult will benefit from an economics degree because these professionals are responsible for helping companies find new, more efficient and ultimately better ways of doing business via organizational changes, policy developments and improved processes. According to TradeSchools.net, a management consultant earns about $94,390 per year, on average.
11. Healthcare Analytics Specialist
Informatics companies need healthcare analytics specialists to study hospital departments' performance patterns. These specialists are usually tasked with analyzing patient data, billing records, inventories and more in order to find gaps. They can earn certification through the American Health Information Management Association, to add to a bachelor's degree and several years of experience. With that, they'll earn about $113,730 on average, according to TradeSchools.net.
12. Financial Examiner
Financial examiners "ensure compliance with laws governing financial institutions and transactions," according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which also suggests that they earn about $80,180 per year, or $38.55 per hour. You'd typically need a Bachelor's degree in a discipline like economics in order to land one of the 60,900 job openings that were available in 2018.
13. Business Reporter
An economics major would make an excellent business reporter, as they understand trends and can speak about them in a way that other, non-economics professionals would understand. This job, according to ZipRecruiter, earns an average salary of $61,497.
A statistician is responsible for analyzing data and applying mathematical and statistical techniques to solve problems at hand. They can earn about $88,190 per year or $42.40 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Statisticians usually come out of undergraduate school with a degree in a subject like economics.
15. Supply Chain Analyst
Supply chain analysts usually work for manufacturing firms, transportation service providers and retail businesses who hire them to ensure that their processes for delivering products to end users from warehouses are efficient. These analysts collect data on cost and productivity, evaluate shipping processes and pinpoint problems while offering solutions. Doing this earns them about $78,730 a year on average, according to TradeSchools.net.
Auditors earn about $70,500 per year or $33.89 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their job is to prepare and examine financial records, so having a degree in economics is hugely valuable.
Through financial modeling and in-depth market research, a real estate analyst evaluates real estate investment opportunities for all sorts of clients. They look at the construction of new buildings, housing sales and different demographics in various areas to call the shots. While getting a real estate broker's license can earn them even more money, they typically start out making about $57,261, according to TradeSchools.net.
18. Pricing Analyst
By researching market trends and using their knowledge of economics, pricing analysts, as you might guess, work with businesses to determine the best prices for products and services. They also work closely with marketing and sales teams to determine how to position products appropriately and optimally.
19. Investment Specialist
Working closely with individual clients and businesses, an investment specialist tracks market trends in order to provide advice on how they should best manage their investments and other finances.
20. Policy Analyst
Combining research, sociology, government and other disciplines and sectors, policy analysts use their extensive knowledge to assist organizations in areas like healthcare, crime prevention, environment and many more to implement and effect real, meaningful change. According to Glassdoor, these professionals can expect to earn an average salary of around $68,281 annually.
AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance jour;nalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreportand Facebook.