A recent report released by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) analyzed the projected employment situation in the U.S. for the next eight years. The report identified the industries, such as healthcare and professional and business services, that are expected to have increasing available job numbers by 2020. The report also discussed industries that are expected to decline in that period of time, including agriculture, manufacturing and government.

The reasons for a decline in jobs in any sector are dependent on many factors, including technological change, the status of the overall economy and the outsourcing of employment overseas. While some of these declines are cyclical and may reverse themselves, there are many that are expected to be permanent shifts in the labor force. Here are five jobs that are expected to continue to vanish in the future.

SEE: How Secure Is Your Job?

Journalists
News gathering has changed in a huge way in the past decade. Technology allows news stories and photos to be beamed all over the world and the instantaneous nature of dissemination requires fewer reporters and journalists to have "boots on the ground." Coupled with this is the rise of citizen journalism - everyday people reporting on happenings around them. As more news is being reported online rather than through our televisions at 6 p.m. every evening, traditional jobs for reporters with notebooks and tape recorders are disappearing.

Financial Products Salespeople
Fifty years ago, most insurance products were sold door-to-door by well-dressed insurance salesmen. Most bonds, stocks and other investments were sold in well-appointed bank offices. As with many industries, technology and access to computers and the Internet have changed all that. Consumers can purchase most financial products online with a few clicks of the mouse. Investment analysis is available on the Internet along with annual reports and prospectuses. The need for face-to-face sales pitches has dissipated and these jobs will continue to decline.

Technology Help Desk Support
Most major consumer-oriented corporations must maintain a help desk and technical support function to cater to their customers. In today's global economy, an increasing number of these jobs are going overseas, especially to India. Companies pay outsourced workers in developing countries a fraction of what they would be required to pay American workers, and the cost savings can be significant. This results in a permanent reduction of available American jobs in this industry.

Public Sector Employees
Local and state governments around the country are struggling to balance their budgets. The federal government is battling to get a grip on spending in order to curtail its galloping deficit. One of the largest expenses in any government entity is labor. The U.S. Department of Labor report projects that federal government jobs alone will shrink by approximately 372,000 by 2020.

Logistics
There was a time when almost all correspondence - whether between individuals or companies - was sent through the mail. Both letters to Aunt Millie and legal contracts physically traveled from one recipient to another and thus was built the United States Postal System. Over time, other couriers entered the industry, including UPS and FedEx. As technologies move forward, more business and personal information is being transferred digitally, through email, fax and text messages. Not only does this form of communication provide the benefit of being virtually instantaneous, but it's also cost-effective. Jobs in the delivery/logistics field have been in decline and are expected to continue to do so in the next decade.

The Bottom Line
While some job opportunities are stalling or vanishing altogether, other industries are creating new jobs and job classifications every day. Understanding labor trends and the projections of future job opportunities can help college students decide on majors and businesses choose strategic direction.

SEE: Best Hiring Opportunities For New Grads

Related Articles
  1. Investing News

    How China's Economy is Now Like America's

    China's economy could take the global economy down with it; why that might be good news in the grand scheme.
  2. Personal Finance

    University Donations: Which Schools Got the Most

    A closer look at the staggering $40.3 billion donated to colleges and universities in 2015.
  3. Investing News

    Volatility Vexed? See What the Experts Are Saying

    Volatile times lead to a diversity of opinions on where the market is headed. Here are takes from five investing luminaries.
  4. Economics

    Why the Chinese Economy Impacts the U.S. So Much

    Here's how the Chinese economy, the second-largest in the world, impacts the United States.
  5. Economics

    The Efficient Market Hypothesis: Settling the Great Debate

    An understanding of neuroscience and the decision-making process provides a resolution to the decades-old debate between proponents and critics of the Efficient Market Hypothesis.
  6. Economics

    4 Economic Challenges Mexico Faces in 2016

    Learn how the Mexican economy improved in 2015 and why 2016 looks like a repeat. Find out why the biggest drag on the economy is still government corruption.
  7. Investing

    Job or Internship?: A Guide for College Students

    College students, which is better for your future - an entry-level job or a unpaid internship? Find out now.
  8. Savings

    The Top 12 Weirdest Scholarships Available

    Cut your college expenses drastically by winning one of these off-the-wall scholarships.
  9. Investing News

    Keep Calm and Carry on: The Investopedia State of the Union

    Investopedia readers are well educated market participants who seek to become sophisticated investors. By collecting data on their reading choices, Investopedia can gauge investor sentiment to ...
  10. Budgeting

    3 Alternative Ways To Save for College

    The cost of college is skyrocketing at a time of record student loan debt. But there are ways to earn a college degree without traditional borrowing.
RELATED FAQS
  1. What's the difference between microeconomics and macroeconomics?

    Microeconomics is generally the study of individuals and business decisions, macroeconomics looks at higher up country and ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Student loans, federal and private: what's the difference?

    The cost of a college education now rivals many home prices, making student loans a huge debt that many young people face ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How might a company use demographics to assess the size of a potential market?

    Demographics can be used to help a company determine key characteristics of the potential population to which it company ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How does accrued interest work on student loans?

    Using private and federal student loans to finance a college education is a common funding strategy, but students are often ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What advice has Tim Cook given to would-be business leaders?

    Billionaire tech tycoon Tim Cook appeared at an event to discuss leadership with the would-be business leaders of Duke University's ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Where did the term Magna Cum Laude originate from and why is it used in academics?

    The Latin phrase magna cum laude translates to "with great praise." Literally, "magna" translates to "great," "cum" to "with" ... Read Full Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Inverted Yield Curve

    An interest rate environment in which long-term debt instruments have a lower yield than short-term debt instruments of the ...
  2. Socially Responsible Investment - SRI

    An investment that is considered socially responsible because of the nature of the business the company conducts. Common ...
  3. Presidential Election Cycle (Theory)

    A theory developed by Yale Hirsch that states that U.S. stock markets are weakest in the year following the election of a ...
  4. Super Bowl Indicator

    An indicator based on the belief that a Super Bowl win for a team from the old AFL (AFC division) foretells a decline in ...
  5. Flight To Quality

    The action of investors moving their capital away from riskier investments to the safest possible investment vehicles. This ...
Trading Center