Economists are below average when it comes to happiness.

At CareerExplorer, we conduct an ongoing survey with millions of people and ask them how satisfied they are with their careers. As it turns out, economists rate their career happiness 3.1 out of 5 stars which puts them in the bottom 36% of careers.

To put this into perspective, we compared how happy economists are to similar careers in the industry. Take a look at the results below:

Salaries and satisfaction ratings in similar careers

Career Satisfaction Avg Salary
Investment fund manager
3.2
$125k
Intelligence analyst
3.2
$84k
Search marketing strategist
3.2
$90k
Statistician
3.2
$96k
Operations manager
3.1
$98k
Economist
3.1
$106k
Project manager
3.1
$55k
Business analyst
3.0
$93k
Treasurer
3.0
$132k
Financial manager
3.0
$132k

So what does it mean to be happy in your career? Let’s break it down into different dimensions:

  • Salary: Are economists happy with their salary?
  • Meaning: Do economists find their jobs meaningful?
  • Personality fit: How well suited are people’s personalities to their everyday tasks as economists?
  • Work environment: How enjoyable are economist’s work environments?
  • Skills utilization: Are economists making the best use of their abilities?

Are economists happy with their salary?

Economists rated their satisfaction with their salaries 3.2/5. Few are explicitly unhappy with their salaries, with most economists having generally positive views of their salary.

We asked economists how fairly compensated they are for their work.
Their response was:

3.2 out of 5 stars

992 economists

5 Star
16%

16% of economists rated their compensation 5 stars

4 Star
26%

26% of economists rated their compensation 4 stars

3 Star
28%

28% of economists rated their compensation 3 stars

2 Star
18%

18% of economists rated their compensation 2 stars

1 Star
12%

12% of economists rated their compensation 1 stars

Do economists find their jobs meaningful?

On average, economists rate the meaningfulness of their work a 2.8/5. While most economists aren’t very fulfilled by their work, some people may still manage to find meaning in it.

We asked economists how meaningful they found their work.
Their response was:

2.8 out of 5 stars

1020 economists

5 Star
15%

15% of economists rated how meaningful they found their career 5 stars

4 Star
19%

19% of economists rated how meaningful they found their career 4 stars

3 Star
22%

22% of economists rated how meaningful they found their career 3 stars

2 Star
23%

23% of economists rated how meaningful they found their career 2 stars

1 Star
21%

21% of economists rated how meaningful they found their career 1 stars

How well are people’s personalities suited to everyday tasks as economists?

Economists rated their personality fit with their work an average of 3.6/5. The majority of economists find their personalities quite well suited to their work, with relatively few having complaints about their fit.

We asked economists how well their personalities fit into their careers.
Their response was:

3.6 out of 5 stars

1161 economists

5 Star
23%

23% of economists rated their career fit 5 stars

4 Star
34%

34% of economists rated their career fit 4 stars

3 Star
26%

26% of economists rated their career fit 3 stars

2 Star
10%

10% of economists rated their career fit 2 stars

1 Star
7%

7% of economists rated their career fit 1 stars

How enjoyable is an economist’s work environment?

As a whole, economists rated their enjoyment of their work environment 3.3/5. Most of them tend to enjoy, or at least not be actively bothered by, their work environment.

We asked economists how much they enjoyed their work environment.
Their response was:

3.3 out of 5 stars

1146 economists

5 Star
17%

17% of economists rated their work environment 5 stars

4 Star
31%

31% of economists rated their work environment 4 stars

3 Star
29%

29% of economists rated their work environment 3 stars

2 Star
14%

14% of economists rated their work environment 2 stars

1 Star
8%

8% of economists rated their work environment 1 stars

Are economists making the best use of their abilities?

Former economists on CareerExplorer have rated their skills utilization 3.0/5. Most economists are satisfied with how well their abilities are skills are made of use.

We asked economists how well their abilities were used in their careers.
Their response was:

3.0 out of 5 stars

1136 economists

5 Star
13%

13% of economists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 5 stars

4 Star
22%

22% of economists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 4 stars

3 Star
30%

30% of economists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 3 stars

2 Star
22%

22% of economists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 2 stars

1 Star
12%

12% of economists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 1 stars