Top Career Paths: Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics
Studying macroeconomics opens doors to many different jobs down the line. Companies are always looking for people who understand a bit about the world and how it functions, particularly when it comes to economics, remaining, as it does, one of the most revered disciplines of the age (for better or worse). If you have specialised in a particular area of economics, then you can use this information to narrow down your options to the kind of roles which will best fit your skills and interests. And there are, perforce, plenty of options available even once you have isolated your particular skillset. Here we've listed just a few of the different places macroeconomics and monetary economics could take you.
Work for a central bank or financial institution
The most obvious role for someone who has studied macroeconomics or monetary economics is to work for a central bank or financial institution. These large, often international employers look at large-scale economic issues and employ many economists as researchers.
These jobs are suited to people who can cope with sifting through large amounts of data and can deal with complex economic models. Sometimes, a degree of comfort with risk and uncertainty is required. If you like the idea of travelling or living abroad, then these organisations often have branches in many locations around the globe, and can be amenable to you moving and working from a different location. Bear in mind, though, that some of these institutions have been implicated in such scandals as the World Financial Crisis, so working for them may take some minor relocating of your ethical compass.
Some examples of employers in this area are:
- European Central Bank (ECB)
- Bank of England
- Asian Development Bank
- International Monetary Fund (IMF)
- World Bank
- World Economic Forum
Work for the government
Another of the biggest employers of macroeconomists and monetary economists is the state. With your knowledge of complex economic systems and skills in data analysis and report writing, you can help with allocation of government funding and plan long-term financial issues such as pensions or healthcare. Jobs with the government tend to be stable, so you can stay in the same job for a very long time without worrying about being made unemployed or having to job hunt. These jobs also tend to come with benefits like sick pay and more vacation days.
However, government work is not for everyone. It can be exceedingly slow to get anything done, which can be frustrating for those who like to move fast. This work requires you to think about the long-term and far-reaching implications of every course of action, so it's not the right role for someone who is flighty or impulsive. But if you can deal with this, then working for the state gives you the chance to put your education to the best possible use in helping people. You can look for jobs in your country's government or at a state or local level.
Work as a consultant
If you can handle regularly being dropped into new and unfamiliar situations, then you might consider working as a consultant. This work requires you to be adaptable and to come up with creative solutions to existing problems. If that sounds like something you'd enjoy, and you don't mind the idea of moving to a new company or location regularly, then one big upside of this work is that it tends to be very well paid, and that each company you work with will bring you new challenges so you're unlikely to get bored.
You could work for one of these consultancies:
- Oxford Analytica
- Europe Economics
- Frontier Economics
- CRA International
Work for a think tank
If you like the sound of performing research and supporting policymakers, then you could work for a think tank. There are many think tanks with specialities in economics in general and macroeconomics or monetary economics in particular.
Some organisations to consider include:
- Institute of Economic Affairs
- Centre for Economic Policy Research
- New Economics Foundation
- CESifo Group