Pennsylvania Careers in Economics

Choosing to work for a large, successful corporation is a smart move. There are 23 Fortune 500 companies with headquarters in Pennsylvania and many require the expertise of managerial economists. Professionals in these companies forecast market trends to create investment strategies for executives. Some of these companies include:

  • AmerisourceBergen, Chesterbrook
  • Comcast, Philadelphia
  • Rite Aid, Camp Hill
  • Sunoco, Philadelphia
  • United States Steel, Pittsburgh
Another option for an economist with an advanced degree is to serve a government agency. Nearly every agency at the local, state, and federal level demands the knowledge of public sector financial economists.  A few of these agencies are:
  • Appalachian Regional Commission
  • Bethlehem Office of Economic Development
  • National Parks of Western Pennsylvania
  • Scranton Office of Economic and Community Development
  • State of Pennsylvania

Careers in economics in Pennsylvania are found around the major metropolitan hubs of Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Allentown or Erie. Due to Pennsylvania’s robust and rapidly expanding economy, there are many opportunities for new economics professionals in the major state industries of:

  • Manufacturing produced $181 billion in revenue for 2008
  • Wholesale and retail generated $314 billion in revenue for 2008
  • Healthcare generated $59 billion in revenue for 2008
  • Construction and real estate produced $53 billion in revenue for 2008

Economist Salaries in Pennsylvania

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 510 economists were employed throughout the state, and they received an annual average income of $97,210 for 2011. In the Philadelphia area, 320 economists were working and earning average annual salaries of $99,410. The 50 economists employed in the Pittsburgh area drew average annual incomes of $113,700.

Pennsylvania universities employed 4,220 economists as business professors, at an annual average salary of $88,550. Philadelphia colleges employed 1,300 business instructors at an average annual salary of $91,660.  The 740 business professors working in Pittsburgh averaged annual incomes of $99,030.  There were 180 business professors employed in the Allentown area, drawing an average annual salary of $99,860.

The number of economics professors totaled 950, and they received an annual average income of $101,660. The 330 economics professors working in the Philadelphia area averaged annual salaries of $109,170.  The economics professors working in the Pittsburgh area totaled 130 and earned average annual salaries of $96,320.  The 80 economics professors working in the Allentown metropolitan area earned on average $98,700.

Resources for Economists in Pennsylvania

Organizations with the greatest number of employment opportunities for economics degree holders in Pennsylvania may include:

  • Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • Allegheny Institute for Public Policy

There are a number of organizations dedicated to the local economy. Becoming a member can improve networking and professional advancement. Consider joining one of these organizations:

  • Economy League of Greater Philadelphia
  • Pennsylvania Development of Agriculture
  • Pennsylvania Economic Association
  • Pennsylvania Economy League
  • Pennsylvania Manufacturer’s Association

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