Federal Economist Careers
Jonathan Zuk / GovCentral Contributor
Economist positions require application of a professional knowledge of economics in the performance of duties that include: research into economic phenomena, analysis of economic data, and the preparation of interpretive reports; advice and consultation on economic matters to governmental officials and private organizations or citizens; and the performance of other professional work in economics including supervision and the direction of economists engaged in the various economics programs of the federal government.
Qualifications and Salaries Entry-level federal economist positions require a bachelor’s degree in a major related to economics. These positions usually start out at GS-9 grade at around $44,000 annually. Agencies usually specify the type of economist (regional, international, agricultural, financial, etc.) that they are recruiting for. Applicants should possess a scholastic background in these specialties, which is usually listed under “additional requirements” in the federal vacancy announcement.
Mid-level federal economists often start out at the GS-12 or GS-13 grades earning between $60-70,000 annually. These positions require a bachelor’s degree in a related major pluss at least one year of experience at the next lowest federal grade level. More experienced economists start out at GS-14 level and earn upwards of $93,000 per year.
Top Hiring Agencies Currently economist positions are in the greatest demand at the Department of Defense, Department of the Interior, and the Department of Commerce. Sub-agencies that are hiring the most are the Minerals Management Service, Army Corps of Engineers, and the Bureau of Census.
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