The best and worst jobs in America: From software geeks to newspaper hacks

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Old Seattle P-I newspaper boxes. Photo Kurt Schlosser

It’s a good thing we got out of the newspaper business.

According to a survey out today from CareerCast.com, newspaper reporter ranks as the worst job in America.

“Ever-shrinking newsrooms, dwindling budgets and competition from Internet businesses have created very difficult conditions for newspaper reporters, which has been ranked as this year’s worst job,” the report says.

Last year, the title went to lumberjack, which now ranks second behind the ink-stained reporter. It is certainly tough times in the newspaper business, with the U.S. Bureau of Labor projecting a six percent declined in reporter jobs by 2020. Pay also stinks, with a median annual salary of $36,000.

Contrast that with some of the top jobs — including biomedical engineer (No. 2 with an annual median salary of $81,540) and software engineer (No. 3 with an annual median salary of $90,530). Here’s what the report had to say about software engineers:

Because computing at all stages continues to grow in importance throughout all labor sectors, software engineers will have abundant job opportunities for many years to come. The BLS projects the field to grow by 30% over the next few years, with hiring activity spread evenly across the nation.

The best jobs list was led by actuary, which uses statistics to analyze data. Here’s more on the top three. Perhaps it’s time to get the kids learning science, engineering and math.

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And here are some of the worst jobs:
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  • Phil Tangent

    There are other factors to be considered. Some people can’t stand sitting all day staring at a monitor and rather be up, moving around.