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Can Economists Work In Banking? (Guide)

One of the best places to work as an economist is a bank, whether a federal bank or a private financial institution. 

Economists can perform an extensive array of interesting work, including research, analysis, consulting, and advising.

They may work directly with the bank and team members or with investors and traders.

In this guide, you will learn more about this exciting career option.

Can Economists Work In Banking?

Economists can work in banking, as they have an expansive knowledge of wealth, assets, and value.

Banking focuses on value creation, accumulation, and transfer.

Value heavily depends on factors such as government policies, socioeconomic trends, and market behavior.

Since this is the case, economists can offer unique knowledge and keen insights to banks and their clients.

They research and analyze the current status of wealth, and transfer of wealth, within the economy and how it affects smaller industries, businesses, and personal investments.

Then, they can generate reports or prepare presentations indicating the strength of certain assets and their calculated risks, predict the behavior of the market, and advise on interest rates and other factors influencing financial choices.

See Can Economists Work In Oil Companies?

What Does An Economist Do In A Bank?

Economists can fulfill many roles in a bank, including

  • Junior Economist: A junior economist will collect, create and update data. They also analyze and compile relevant information used in reports for the economist team or bank.
  • Senior or Chief Economist: A senior economist researches, analyzes, and compiles data on complex economic topics or high-stake financials. They generate reports and carry out presentations for banks and clients.
  • Financial Advisor or Consultant: A financial advisor creates, manages, and consults on client portfolios. They draw from relevant economic data and financial information to advise on assets, investments, loans, mortgages, debt, and other financial decisions.
  • Financial Analyst: A financial analyst analyzes the financial data of corporations to estimate future finances and advise on financial activity. They may provide these services to the bank or to business clients.
  • Trader: A trader buys and sells financial products based on economic data, banking objectives, and market predictions.

Can Economists Become Bankers?

A banker manages personal and business client accounts and their finances.

They will help clients with their primary accounts, loans, lines of credit, credit cards, mortgages, and investment funds.

Economists have an excellent foundation to become bankers, as they already have at least a bachelor’s degree in this related field.

They can increase their job opportunities and earning potential if they have a master’s degree in economics or finance.

Most banking jobs do not require a liscence, however some specialties (such as investment banking) require bankers to pass an exam to obtain official certification.

How To Become A Bank Economist?

Economists pursuing a career in a bank will need to complete the same requirements as a typical economist.

They must earn a Master’s or Ph.D. in economics and complete an internship or have work experience in economics or finance.

If economists only have a Master’s degree, typical baking positions require at least two years of relevant work experience.

Many banks will prioritize economists who also have an excellent understanding of stress testing, risk modeling, and programming with statistical software language systems (Python, MatLab, Stata, or R are all popular languages).

Applicants can stand out by maintaining up-to-date knowledge of the American banking system and government policies or reforms.

See Can Economists Predict Recessions?

How Much Do Economists At Banks Make?

Bank economists make an average of $163,640 annually.

The banking salary is above the national median for economists, $105,630.

However, the true salary depends on financial institution, job position, education, and experience.

For instance, senior economists make an average of $115,651 annually, although the top range for this position is $195,360.

Where Are Economists Employed?

Economists can work in corporations, nonprofit organizations, government agencies and departments, banks or insurance companies, academic institutions, research and development services, and consulting agencies.

Career seekers may check out these top employers for economists:

  • International Finance Corporation (IFC)
  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)
  • World Bank
  • Deloitte
  • U.S. Department of Commerce
  • U.S. Department of Labor
  • JPMorgan Chase
  • Bank of America
  • Wells Fargo
  • Citi

What Is The Highest Paying Job In Economics?

The highest paying job in economics is an actuary, paying $206,820 in the high range.

Other top contenders include sales managers, management analysts, corporate economists, compensation and benefits managers, economic consultants, and personal financial advisors.

These positions all make well-above 100k annually in the high range.

Final Thoughts

Prospective economists can pursue many career paths, and banking is a popular choice.

Bank economists engage in a broad spectrum of intriguing work and share their knowledge with their partners or clients.

It can be fulfilling work in and of itself, yet economists can also achieve high salaries within financial institutions.