Is Economics A Good Degree: Here’s All You Should Know

Perhaps you’re considering studying economics, but you’re not sure if it is a good degree with excellent career prospects; this article is for you.

Economics is a field that teaches you to think strategically and make rational decisions to solve a problem.

As an economics major, you’d be taught to understand and analyze real-life concepts such as inflation, unemployment, economic growth, consumer behavior, finance, and more.

With this knowledge, you can work in financial institutions, public sectors, business organizations, or international affairs. So, yes, economics is a good degree that offers great career prospects.

Let’s take a closer look at what a degree in economics entails, some of the career options available in the field, and what you can expect to earn with a degree in economics.

What does an economics degree entail?

Economics is a diverse discipline that considers many aspects of human behavior and the economy. It is divided into many subfields: micro, macro, international, industrial, labor, and financial economics.

Microeconomics studies the decisions of an individual or a firm about demand and supply.

This knowledge can help businesses understand how much of a good or service consumers are willing and able to buy at a given price and how they can maximize profits.

Conversely, macroeconomics deals with total economic factors such as unemployment, inflation, economic growth, and so on.

Macroeconomists analyze past economic trends and forecast future expectations to provide better economic solutions.

International economics studies the international finance markets, import and export, exchange rates, and the effect of international trade policies on an economy.

Labor economics studies labor demand, supply, wages, employment, and unemployment.

Lastly, private financial economics studies the activities of financial systems while public finance deals with issues like tax, government budget, and welfare policies.

The aforementioned proves that economics is comprehensive and a degree in the field could be a good stepping stone into a career you will love.

SEE: Top Reasons Why You Should Major in Economics 

What jobs can you do with an economics degree?

Here are some of the professions you qualify for with an economics degree:

1. Economist

Economists are professionals who analyze economic issues and advise individuals, businesses, and governments based on their findings.

They do this by conducting surveys, collecting data, analyzing it using mathematical models, techniques, and software, and presenting their results in reports.

An economist deals with issues such as unemployment, inflation, and budgets in society. They proffer solutions to economic problems and advise the government on better ways to handle economic situations.

Economists can also work in a business organization, analyzing business-related issues like competitors’ activities, consumer behavior, and the business environment.

They provide managers with information on how the economy affects their business and ways by which they can maximize profit. Thankfully, a bachelor’s degree in economics qualifies you to work as an economist.

Economists can apply their analytic skills in diverse fields, whether health, education, business, or the public sector.

SEE: What to do with an Economics degree

2. Actuaries

Managing a business is risky, and every business is subject to some level of financial risk. An actuary is a business expert who measures and manages risks and uncertainty using mathematical, statistical, and financial theories.

More specifically, they deal with the risks associated with finance. For instance, in an insurance firm, actuaries ensure that the firm sets premium insurance rates and always has funds ready to meet claims.

They also help businesses manage risk associated with growth or expansion and ensure robust cash flow management to avoid liquidity risk.

A bachelor’s degree in economics may not be enough for you to become a fully qualified actuary. For most actuaries, it takes an additional 7 to 8 years to pass all ten actuary exams.

But the good thing is that you can begin as an entry-level actuary and continue to grow as you go along. As of 2021, actuaries earn as much as $105,900, and its projected annual job growth is 30% up until 2030, making it a very lucrative career.

3. Financial/budget analyst

Both financial analysts and budget analysts perform the same functions. Their job roles include offering advice about fund requests and ensuring that budgets for any project are complete, accurate, and compliant.

They analyze financial statements and predict a company’s future outcome. Put, they guide businesses in minimizing spending to maximize profit.

A bachelor’s degree in economics, accounting, and other related disciplines prepares you to work as a financial or budget analyst. You’d learn to use mathematical techniques and statistics to predict future performance.

SEE: Should You Major In Accounting or Finance?

4. Market research analyst

Market research analysts help companies make better decisions to become profitable by gathering and analyzing data on their consumers and competitors.

They gather details on demographic information of customers, what they want, and their behavior toward price changes.

Additionally, they gain insight into competitors’ strategies regarding their prices, promotions, and the like.

With this information, businesses can position their products to sell better and beat their competitors to a larger market share.

Economics major involves much data gathering and analyses. Moreso, you will gain an extensive understanding of consumer behavior and competitors.

SEE: Is A Business Degree Worth It?

5. Policy analyst

These are professionals who understand how policy affects a business. They advise businesses on the effect of certain policies on their operations and the steps they should take to avoid falling into legal potholes.

A degree in economics helps you understand how the business environment works, and the legal, social, and political factors.

Businesses that want to expand into new territories where they are not familiar could employ the help of a policy analyst to help them enter the market appropriately. And you can decide to work with a public or private firm.

SEE: Is a Political Science Degree Worth It

What are the requirements for studying economics?

Knowing what A-level courses you need to get accepted is crucial if you’re considering a major in economics. First, you would need to have strong math grades.

Other subjects that can improve your chances of getting accepted include economics, business, or statistics. Interestingly, in most schools, A-level economics isn’t compulsory.

However, being taught in high school would help you learn firsthand what to expect in college.

Moreso, you would have understood many basic economics concepts, which will come in handy at college or university. Keep in mind that economics majors involve a lot of math and statistics, based heavily on these subjects.

Considering the level of mathematics involved in economics, taking further math at A-level could be of great help too.

That said, it is important to note that the criteria for acceptance differ in universities and colleges. So, research the requirements for economics majors before applying to any school.

SEE: Major Area Of Study

Is economics hard?

The answer to this question is dependent majorly on interest. Economics isn’t necessarily difficult, however before you finally settle for an economics major, you should have a keen interest in math and statistics.

However, it doesn’t involve high-level math like physics or engineering majors. Economists analyze hypothetical situations using mathematical and statistical techniques to draw inferences.

It involves many graphs that you will be taught to read and understand. This may require your flair for technical drawing and the ability to relate lines to figures and problems.

So, if you don’t tick these boxes, economics may be difficult for you. But economics is a discipline that builds on existing knowledge, so what’s most important is understanding the foundation.

Once you can get the hang of its underlying principles, understanding the mathematical and statistical parts shouldn’t be so difficult.

Instead of studying it as a course, picturing it as learning something new can make it fun.

SEE: Is Mechanical Engineering Hard?

FAQs

Can you get a good job with an economics degree?

Yes.

With your degree in economics, you can work as a financial analyst, consultant, and policy analyst and earn good pay.

Are economists in high demand?

Yes.

BLS projects an increase in demand for economists by 13% annually from 2020 to 2030.

How much can you earn with an economics degree?

According to BLS, the average annual wage for economists was $105,630 in 2021.

Conclusion

If you love proffering solutions to problems, thinking critically, and doing mathematics and statistics, then an economics degree may be a good career choice.

It is a promising field with opportunities for money-making. It also offers opportunities for career growth as you can decide to go for your master’s or doctorate.

But, if you think economics may be too difficult for you, business administration majors and communication majors are less demanding.

I hope this article was helpful.

Thanks for reading.