Virginia Careers in Economics

Virginia has the lowest unemployment rate in the Battleground States at 5.9 percent compared to the national average of 8 percent. The state has held steady at just under 6 percent for three consecutive quarters and declined slightly from last year. Economists are doing exceptionally well in Virginia with impressive six-figure salaries.

Virginia’s Average Salary for Economists

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) offers some attractive figures for future economics careers. There are currently 470 economists working in the state which is well above the average in many other regions. The average salary is $117,700 or $56.59 per hour. There are .133 economist jobs posted for every 1,000 openings.

Salaries vary depending on the city:

  • Economist: Alexandria, $114,450
  • Economist: Arlington, $114,450
  • Management Analyst: Norfolk, $84,740
  • Management Analyst: Virginia Beach $84,740


Choosing Corporate or Government

Virginia is home to two dozen Fortune 500 companies including Freddie Mac in McLean. Economists and analysts at Freddie Mac work closely with executives and financial officers to track the market and make smart investment and lending choices.

General Dynamics in Falls Church is another corporation that demands the expertise of economists. Students who pursue a managerial-driven economics program are particularly desired by big businesses. Additional companies in Virginia that support careers in economics include:

  • AES, Arlington
  • Altria Group, Richmond
  • Capital One Financial, McLean
  • Computer Sciences, Falls Church
  • Northrup Grumman, Falls Church

Public sector economist jobs in Virginia are found with the numerous government agencies that hire economists to help oversee public spending and investment strategies. A few of these agencies include:

  • Department of Economic Development
  • Governor’s Office
  • Virginia Department of Education


Focus on Connections

Virginians interested in the economy can join a number of organizations. Consider becoming a member of one of these groups while pursuing an advanced degree:

  • Clean Economy Network
  • Virginia Economic Developers Association
  • Virginia Economic Development Partnership

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