With the economy more often than not the topic de jour and with ordinary people actually interested in what they have to say about it for a change, you would think this would be a good time to be an economist. But a story in today's WSJ notes that not all is golden as the Job Market for Economists Turns ... Dismal (sub req):
Among newly minted economics Ph.D.s, jobs at top-ranked universities and business schools are the most sought after. Economists have also traditionally found more lucrative jobs outside of academia: at government agencies, at nongovernmental organizations, like the International Monetary Fund, and in the private sector. But with the financial crisis, economist jobs at hedge funds and Wall Street firms have dried up, leaving schools with more candidates to choose from.
The rollback comes at a historic time, as economists struggle to explain the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. The crisis, which few economists saw coming, revealed deep gaps in many of the standard ways that economics approaches the economy, driving home the need for fresh thinking and talent.
Fresh talent that may find it tough going as they seek a job in the field. Perhaps the recently passed stimulus package will help their cause. How many economists does it take to pave a frontage road anyway?