What’s Happening in the World Economy: This Is Your Next Job

Hello. Today we look at the future of work, Brazil’s recovery and what surging copper prices tell us about the global economy.

The Jobs of Tomorrow

There was good news for American workers this week as McDonalds and Chipotle raised wages and Amazon detailed plans to boost hiring.

The announcements came amid the intensifying debate over why companies are struggling to find staff despite elevated unemployment and what that means for inflation. Questions over social justice and income inequality are also increasingly being asked of corporations.

Beyond the here and now, strategists at Bank of America are looking at the longer-termfuture of work. 

Their call, made in a report to clients this week, is that the labor markets of tomorrow won’t be driven by traditional white- or blue-collar work given technologies will advance and societies will have different needs.

Instead, there will be “new collar” jobs in technology, cyber and coding as our economies embrace robots.

Much will also depend on “pink” positions in the so-called care economy, such as nurses, carers and teachers. “Green” jobs include solar engineers, wind technicians and battery experts.

The BofA team give three reasons for that shift:

  • Each career represents high-quality work with long-term stability
  • Such jobs are hard to automate as they rely on emotional intelligence or dexterity.
  • They are exposed to the hot sectors of healthcare and renewables

With U.S. employment projected to increase by 6 million to 168.8 million by 2029, healthcare jobs are tipped to account for 13 of the 30 fastest growing jobs, the Wall Street bank said. The two quickest will be solar PV installers and wind turbine service technicians.

As for Europe, the BofA team said 70% of job growth this decade will be in health and social work, professional, scientific and technical services and education. Other industries set to expand: creative jobs such as theater directors an fashion designers, whose work can’t be replicated by robots.

And as technology generates more time for leisure, occupations such as yoga teachers and sommeliers could surge. The report provides a counter-point to those worried they’re about to lose their jobs to robots.

“Ultimately we think the future of work is humans and robots not humans versus robots as we believe net-net innovation will continue to offset the risk of mass job automation,” the strategists said.

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