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January 27, 2022

The best and worst jobs of 2011

It’s a tough exercise to measure what the top and bottom jobs in North America are because, frankly, most people will tell you their  job is the worst.

Istockphoto_9755883-job-search But we’ve been here before: yes, your job as a year-round construction worker in Canada stinks, though, surely, it’s not as bad as it gets.

If not, then what is? A new report from CareerCast.com gives their thoughts on that – based on duties and midlevel income, here are their choices for the worst, and best, jobs in 2011.

Here they are, from 1-200, ranked according to a survey the job site undertook with data from the Labor Dept. and U.S. Census.

The top five, with midlevel incomes (in USD) in parentheses:

1) Software engineer ($87,000)
2) Mathematician ($94,000)
3) Actuary ($87,000)
4) Statistician ($73,000)
5) Computer systems analyst ($77,000)

And, the bottom five, with midlevel incomes (in USD) in parentheses:

5) Taxi driver ($21,000)
4) Roofer ($34,000)
3) Lumberjack ($32,000)
2) Ironworker ($34,000)
1) Roustabout ($32,000)

If you check the whole list, much of it is based, of course, on salary – the higher the midlevel income, the higher it’s generally to fall on the CareerCast.com rundown.

But money isn’t everything, at least. A few lower-paying jobs – paralegal assistant, at $47,000 per year, for instance, falls at no. 13 – rank rather high, and ahead of higher-paying gigs. Similarly, a few good-paying careers – farmer ($59,000) and highway patrol officer ($53,000) – don’t even crack the top 150.

What do you think makes a job “good” or “bad”? Where does your career fall on this list?

By Jason Buckland, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...