7 Jobs That Are Going to Survive the Next Economic Crash

stock market

If you’ve been paying attention to the news lately, you probably noticed that the economy is making some scary moves. The stock market has been absolutely pummeled, in what is being called the worst start to a year in American history. Trillions of dollars in wealth have evaporated already. Walmart is closing hundreds of stores, Puerto Rico is facing economic collapse, and global shipping is dead in the water. And to top it all off, only a select few regions in the United States have managed to recover from the last economic crisis.

It’s safe to say that we’re about to plunge head first into another recession. And it’s about time, because recessions tend to happen every 7-8 years, so we’re a bit overdue. If you haven’t already, now is the time to start bracing yourself for this eventuality. It’s just like any other disaster. If you prepare yourself ahead of time, you stand a better chance of staying above water when everything goes to hell.

One of the many ways you can position yourself to survive and succeed before an economic calamity, is to consider what skills will be in demand when money is tight across the board. I’m not talking about a total financial collapse and the breakdown of society, where suddenly blacksmiths and cobblers are in high demand. You just have to ask yourself, which jobs are going to be available during a recession, or even a prolonged economic depression?

Given past trends, I’ve selected 7 industries that I believe are going to experience either growth or stability in the next recession. It is by no means a complete list, so feel free to share your own job ideas in the comments below.


Specifically, truck drivers. Just because the economy slows down, doesn’t mean businesses won’t stop needing things delivered to their stores. Granted, fewer goods will be delivered during a recession, but there is and has been a really high demand for truck drivers in the United States, in both good times and bad. That’s because it’s not a desirable job, and there is an unbelievably high turnover rate. That employee turnover rate often increases during a recession because wages will drop, meaning there will be even more available jobs. It’s not pleasant work, but a job is a job and this line of work can put food on the table when times are tough.

However, it may not be wise to turn this into a long-term career. It’s very possible that self-driving cars will start taking over the roads in the near future, and automated semi trucks are already in the works. This line of work should still be available by the time the next recession arrives in another 8 years, but after that, all bets are off. Alternatively UPS/Fedex/DHL delivery jobs should be around for a while, though it’s hard to say when the act of delivering a package will be automated as well.

Renewable Energy

Anything related to renewable energy will likely continue to experience growth during a recession, for the simple fact that governments, companies, and individuals all want to save money. While there are several different kinds of renewable energy such as wind, biomass, geothermal etc, solar has been leading the pack for some time now and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Regardless of whether it’s the manufacture, transportation, marketing, or installation of solar panels and accessories, you can expect growth in this field during a recession.

Keep in mind though, that during a recession the most significant business growth in this field will be seen in commercial and government projects, rather than residential installations. While solar panels undoubtedly save money, they also have heavy up-front costs that will be easier for large organizations to afford. The same goes for other forms of renewable energy.

Sales and Marketing

It doesn’t really matter what business you work for, or even if you work for yourself, most things don’t sell themselves. And in a recession, the ability to convince other people to buy a product or service suddenly becomes a much more valuable skill. It could be a sales, merchandising, advertising, or copywriting position. If you have a knack for closing a deal or enticing new customers, you should do well in any company, or any economic climate.


It’s no secret that crime rates often go up when the economy falls apart. To be fair, burglaries, murders, and robberies didn’t go up in the US during the last recession, but that usually isn’t the case. When you look throughout history, in any place in the world, you’ll usually find that all sorts of crimes become more frequent when there is less money to go around. If the crisis is so bad that otherwise successful people fail to earn enough money to feed and house themselves and their families, you can expect to see more crimes in your neighborhood.

On top of that, recessions often lead to fewer tax dollars in the coffers of the government, which means there won’t be as many police officers on the streets. Small businesses, corporations, gated communities, and even governments, will start to outsource their security needs to the private sector. Security guards are in high demand during recessions, and it doesn’t typically require very much training to enter this field. Almost anyone without a criminal record can find a job as a security guard.

And you can expect growth in this sector even during good times. The truth is, most cities in America have massive financial liabilities related to the pensions of their police forces, and they may not be able to afford them in the future. At some point within the next 20 years, you can expect to see massive police layoffs, followed by an abundance of opportunities in the private security sector.


Pretty much every job in the medical field is expected to see double-digit growth over the next decade. Granted, people avoid most non life threatening medical procedures when the economy is bad (especially dental procedures), but growth will continue in this sector regardless of the economic climate. We live in a pretty unhealthy society, which combined with our rapidly aging population, means business will be booming for a long time.

And you don’t necessarily need to be a doctor or a nurse to take advantage of it. There are plenty of jobs in the medical field that don’t require a 4 or 8 year college degree. There are EMTs, surgical technologists, phlebotomists, lab assistants, and physical therapy aides. Even security guards and janitors can make above average wages compared to their peers, in a hospital setting.

Food Production

During a recession, you obviously want a job that pertains to an industry that people simply can’t do without. Food certainly falls under that category. However, you don’t want a job related to industrial farming. That employment field has consistently shrunk over the years due to automation. The production of organic food is where it’s really at.

Whether it’s growing organic food, shipping it, marketing it, or selling it, that’s the food industry you want to be in. Organic food sales have increased year after year since 2000. There was a slowdown in sales during the last recession, but growth in that industry continued nonetheless. More and more people are seeing the benefits in eating healthier food, and many of them are willing to pay more for it, even when they don’t have as much money. Which makes sense, because who are we kidding, what good is money when you’re too sick to earn it and too frail to enjoy it?


I hate to suggest this since it’s a rather unsavory business, but our vices are real moneymakers in hard times. However, not all vices are created equal. The gambling industry for instance, took a huge hit after the last recession. Tobacco sales often take a hit as well.  The vices that do thrive in bad times, are the little things. Alcohol and junk food do particularly well. The demand for Marijuana often increases as well which, considering how many states have been legalizing that drug lately, it may be a very lucrative trade to be involved in during a recession.

Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.

Joshua’s website is Strange Danger

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published January 18th, 2016
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  • Jay_Sherman

    I disagree with truck driver and renewable energy.

    There are just too many people around who can drive trucks- and when times turn bad and other jobs/businesses go away, they all come back to driving….at a time when there will be fewer driving jobs. This is exactly what happened in the recession of the early 80’s when we were reeling from the effects of Jimmeh Carter’s presidency and 21% interest rates. Truck drivers and construction workers were SOL.

    And renewable energy? No. That field is still totally dependent upon tax-funded subsidies and other gov’t stimuli. Between that, and the price of erl being so low, that industry will largely go away during the crash. Find a real renewable energy source which is economically viable without subsidy, and you’ll have something (You’ll be the nmext Bill Gates) -but as it stands, renewable energy is an artificial industry.

    • abinico

      If you find a economically viable renewable energy source, you will b killed (I.E. sudden onset of fatal stomach cancer)

      • Jay_Sherman

        Hehe, you got that right!

    • Knutekritt

      You are right and during the great depression half od the nursing workforce were out of work or were working as volunteers for something to do

      • Jay_Sherman

        Great example! It only stands to reason, that during an economic crisis, jobs which tons of people possess the ability to do/are trained for; and especially jobs which were very common, and then become more rare, will be the LEAST likely to be acquired, because there will be far fewer of them, and tons of out-of-work people who are already proficient at those jobs. The best thing is to figure out something we can do independently- little one-man businesses, for cash- for we will do far better on “the gray market” than those who will be forced to take any job and work under any condition for minimal pay, and have to pay taxes. People who can fix things, especially- older things (as opposed to newer cars and appliances for which electronic parts are already expensive, and may become non-existent for) will really never want for work. Those of us who can rebuild a carburetor or get that old mechanical washing machine working again, will be sought-out. (I hear that that’s the way it pretty much already is in some third-world countries)- And machinists! If ya have a machine shop or can work in one…there’ s going to be lots of call for repairing/fabricating parts which are no longer available or which are too costly to buy…. (I’ve already encountered this with a tractor i own, where I can often just have a simple part made or repaired at a machine shop, much cheaper than what it would cost to buy a new one from the stealer…err..uh…dealer!- and this is a 25 year-old tractor!). But darn..there are going to be long lines of truck drivers clamoring for one or two jobs….

      • R D

        Might one think about learning dentistry. It sounds crazy but dentistry as it was practiced in the early 1900 was pull it or clean it. Dental tools are easy to acquire and manuals are presently available to read.
        In the military services in the early 1950s they didn’t drill or repair, just pulled the tooth that too bad and could possibly cause the men to get into trouble during combat.
        I recommend if your are considering this you might also put in a large supply of cheap vodka too, for anesthesia. LOL
        Tartar scrappers, explorers, elevators (the tool that pries the tooth out) and TE (Tooth extractors) dental tools are not that expensive.
        A decent book on this is “Where There Is No Dentist”

  • Knutekritt

    …and this is why we need to get out of debt and be prepared to stand alone without income so we can volunteer to work and keep America going while some resolution or new monetary system happens. We need to be self sufficient!

  • omni

    the jobs that will survive the recession
    NSA workers
    welfare workers
    professional athletes
    al Sharpton and his ilk
    drug dealers

    • Jay_Sherman

      Hahaha! You got that right! And don’t forget bar keepers! No matter how bad the economy; no matter how bad the neighborhood…there are always plenty of bars, and people who find the money to drink at them.

      • omni

        thanks for the tip!-Good luck in the “rosy” future!

  • R D

    You might consider putting crafting abilities like sewing, knitting and crocheting ( which lend itself to knowing how to repair fabrics) on your list of essential jobs.
    Clothes will need to be repaired, resewn due to weight loss or enlarged for growing children that the parents can’t buy new colthes for, due to either unavailablity or no finances.
    This brings in the resale bussiness such as Salvation Army type business, that you can start in your home or exchange clothing services. What better than to salvage used clothing, repair it and clean it and sell it.
    Leather crafting is beneficial for shoe and leather goods repair.
    Bartering for services can be a really great way to be able to trade services for items or vice versa.
    Also many repair services, for that matter, can be a great skill that will be needed in a grid down situation.
    Men that can repair applicances, autos, tools or other usefull things will be in demand too.
    A good wood working shop could be really great investment as many ppl will be needing repair services rather than just junking items like they did before.
    Small electrical appliances knowledge could be a really great skill and well as other types of repair abilities.
    There is no time like the present to start acquiring these skills while books and the internet is still available.
    I could go on for a long time on these subjects but you get the picture I think.

  • R D

    Great ideas.

  • Timothy King

    I also must disagree with the truck driver idea, plus elements of some of the others, too. I agree with what Jay Sherman is saying about the trucking industry, but there’s another issue, as well. Trucking has become a very heavily regulated industry, something which frustrates truck drivers a lot. There are many trucking companies out there who have found ways of significantly undercutting other firms, but they’re doing this in a Wal-Mart sort of fashion, resulting in the drivers hardly getting enough income to live on. The result is something like Uber vs regular taxi companies. (and that’s another transportation trend, too) But the truckers’ customers are still trying to drive down their costs in a big way, and in this, the US Military is coming to the rescue, sort of: Because of all the roadside bombs the military has had to deal with in Iraq, etc, defense companies have been trying to come up with how to minimize convoy casualties, and one of their solutions has become robotic, or remotely controlled, trucks / convoys. We’ve also seen the same thing beginning to happen on our own streets, with those Google cars. But in another few years, we are very likely to see remotely controlled, driverless trucks on the roads, and that is likely to kill the entire career category of “truck driver,” with perhaps only high-end, customized routes being the exception.

    Renewable energy will do better, but it will have problems, too. Yes, solar, wind, etc, are generally accepted now, and lots of companies and individuals are installing them, but the traditional energy companies are feeling threatened by them. These traditional energy companies are very large and politically powerful, often forming local monopolies, and they are (rather successfully) fighting the general trends towards renewables, and especially solar power. Many of the government incentives for solar are being cut off, as a result. And wind power is running into problems with the environmentalists, too, over bird strikes and other issues.

    Food Production is another area I have to take issue with. Yes, we all need to eat, but like the trucking industry, the food industry is heavily commoditized and is seeking to slash their costs. As just one example of what this means, I’ve seen several restaurants have wifi terminals at their tables now, allowing customers to order their food over the internet, while they’re sitting in the restaurant. I asked the waitresses about this, and they were concerned, because even though their employers hadn’t reduced their staff levels in response to this yet, it was clearly on the agenda. This technology, of course, is really just in the pilot stage, but as it becomes more accepted, and the bugs are worked out, we will likely see major staffing reductions in the wait staffs of restaurants all over. Restaurants without this technology will have trouble staying competitive. And situations with Obamacare requirements, etc, will only make this worse.

    I would like to add the Information Technology industry to the list of resilient careers, but there are problems with this too. For one, we depend heavily on a good supply of electricity, which isn’t really guaranteed anymore. But more generally, the IT industry is being commoditized too. My own job, after I’ve been at it for about 20 years, can be effectively done by a mere high school graduate now, for instance. It has steadily become simpler, with more automation coming every year. There is downward pressure on salaries now, and lots of consolidation among companies. There is still much room for career advancement, but it’s more specialized and customer-focused, and more difficult to get into. Oh, and foreign outsourcing is a major inroad too. We are competing globally now, and many companies are going to find that they simply cannot justify traditionally high IT salaries, when people overseas can do the same work, over the internet, for a 5th of the cost.

  • Marquita martin

    I disagree with most of this article, except for medical, security, and vice. I would include social work, teaching, the job market might shrink a little, but they will always be needed.

  • Smart man ! Thanks for the advice !

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