50% unemployed grads per year. Am I reading these number wrong? Job outlook vs number of new grads

Sep 22, 2018
25
19
11
Oregon
According to BLS, looking at "employment change", there will be 17,400 new jobs over the next 10 years (2016 to 2026). So assuming linear growth there are 1740 new jobs per year.

According to many sources, schools are churning out 15,000 new grads annually.

So 15,000 new grads competing for 1740 positions per year. That leaves 13,260 (the difference) with no job??? I know I left out the number of pharmacists retiring per year but highly doubt it's anywhere close to 13,260.
 

DOOM N GLOOM

Membership Revoked
Removed
Account on Hold
Sep 4, 2018
207
224
41
According to BLS, looking at "employment change", there will be 17,400 new jobs over the next 10 years (2016 to 2026). So assuming linear growth there are 1740 new jobs per year.

According to many sources, schools are churning out 15,000 new grads annually.

So 15,000 new grads competing for 1740 positions per year. That leaves 13,260 (the difference) with no job??? I know I left out the number of pharmacists retiring per year but highly doubt it's anywhere close to 13,260.
And people wonder why there are so many doom and gloom posters on this forum. This isn’t a conspiracy theory that the profession is doomed — numbers don’t lie.
 
Sep 20, 2018
34
31
21
Status
Pharmacist
According to BLS, looking at "employment change", there will be 17,400 new jobs over the next 10 years (2016 to 2026). So assuming linear growth there are 1740 new jobs per year.

According to many sources, schools are churning out 15,000 new grads annually.

So 15,000 new grads competing for 1740 positions per year. That leaves 13,260 (the difference) with no job??? I know I left out the number of pharmacists retiring per year but highly doubt it's anywhere close to 13,260.
It's even worse because the vast majority of those positions will be filled by existing work force members whos positions are removed. BLS doesn't predict what will happen with existing jobs accurately, just the number of open spots
 
  • Like
Reactions: MindGeek

DOOM N GLOOM

Membership Revoked
Removed
Account on Hold
Sep 4, 2018
207
224
41
It's even worse because the vast majority of those positions will be filled by existing work force members whos positions are removed. BLS doesn't predict what will happen with existing jobs accurately, just the number of open spots
Plus the grads 1, 2, 3, 4, 5+ years out who couldn’t secure a job right after graduation.

Imagine taking an integral of all the unemployed pharmacists from this past year to the beginning of time. My head hurts now.
 

stoichiometrist

7+ Year Member
Aug 2, 2011
1,937
1,682
181
A lot of older pharmacists are being forced out and replaced with desperate new grads with $200k+ in loans who have resigned to working themselves to death for lower pay and worse benefits.
 
Sep 22, 2018
25
19
11
Oregon
Okay I couldn't find any statistics on how many pharmacists retire per year, but lots of news stories report 10,000 baby boomers retire everyday. So that's 3,650,000 people retiring per year. US population is 325 million. Employment rate according to BLS is 60%, so there are currently 195 million employed people in the US. Thus 1.8% of the US workforce retires per year. BLS reports a total 312,500 pharmacist jobs in 2016. Now let's assume that pharmacists retiring per year reflects the national average, thus there were approximately 5625 pharmacists who retired in 2016 (1.8% of 312,500).

Now let's assume there will be 5625 pharmacists retiring every year for the next 10 years (the actual number may increase marginally every year but not by much). So 1740 new jobs per year (according to BLS) + 5625 retiring per year = 7365 positions opening up per year. Therefore there's going to be 15,000 new grads competing for 7365 positions per year for the next 10 years. That leaves 7,635 unemployed grads every year. That's 50.9% unemployment rate for each graduating class and this is NOT taking into account people who could only find part-time positions. WTF!?!? Someone find a flaw in my calculations because this can't be true.

EDIT: I shouldn't have calculated retirement rate out of total US population. Fixed it so it's calculated from current labor force.
 
Last edited:

DOOM N GLOOM

Membership Revoked
Removed
Account on Hold
Sep 4, 2018
207
224
41
Okay I couldn't find any statistics on how many pharmacists retire per year, but lots of news stories report 10,000 baby boomers retire everyday. So that's 3,650,000 people retiring per year. US population is 325 million. Thus 1.12% of the population retires per year. BLS reports a total 312,500 pharmacist jobs in 2016. Now let's assume that pharmacists retiring per year reflects the national average, thus there were approximately 3,500 pharmacists who retired in 2016 (1.12% of 312,500).

Now let's assume there will be 3500 pharmacists retiring every year for the next 10 years (the actual number may increase marginally every year but not by much). So 1740 new jobs per year (according to BLS) + 3500 retiring per year = 5240 positions opening up per year. Therefore there's going to be 15,000 new grads competing for 5240 positions per year for the next 10 years. That leaves 9760 unemployed grads every year. That's 65% unemployment rate for each graduating class and this is NOT taking into account people who could only find part-time positions. WTF!?!? Someone find a flaw in my calculations because this can't be true.
Subtract the 5000+ grads that do residencies, fellowships or other graduate programs after their PharmD.
 

Timbo

7+ Year Member
Dec 31, 2010
254
136
181
Status
Pharmacist
Strange but US News only report a 2% unemployment rate for pharmacists. But that doesn't fall in line with what the other numbers tell us. Is the 15,000 a pretty good approximation of the number of new grads per year?
 

DOOM N GLOOM

Membership Revoked
Removed
Account on Hold
Sep 4, 2018
207
224
41
But by that logic you'd have the previous year's residents entering the work force to negate that

Either way, not great job security
I guess the long way to calculate this would be as follows:

For 2018, oversupply of pharmacists = 15,000 new grads - 5000 postdoc program participants - 1740 new jobs - # of retiring pharmacists + number of pharmacist roles eliminated due to mergers/restructuring + (# of 2017 postdoc training grads + # of 2016 postdoc training grads + # of 2015 postdoc training grads etc...) - (# of 2017 postdoc training grads lost to attrition/career changes + # of 2016 postdoc training grads lost to attrition/career changes + # of 2015 postdoc training grads lost to attrition/career changes etc...) + (oversupply of pharmacists in 2017 + oversupply of pharmacists in 2016 + oversupply of pharmacists in 2015 etc...).

I think that makes sense? Can’t believe I wasted 10 minutes typing this out... Gives me a headache regardless of what the true calculation is lol.
 
Sep 20, 2018
34
31
21
Status
Pharmacist
Unemployment rates do not take into account people working in fields outside pharmacy or in person diem/part time positions. Based on class size of over 150 schools, I'd say that's accurate

Lol @DOOM N GLOOM, good thought process. No need to try and calculate,I think the idea is pretty clear
 
Sep 22, 2018
25
19
11
Oregon
Have you looks at the Pharmacist Demand Index? It's a much better gauge than BLS.
How so? Not sure of the specific methods but seems like PDI is based solely on surveys submitted by pharmacist hiring managers. Obviously that leads very biased results. Even then PDI shows a steady decrease in demand compared to supply with a sharp drop in 2017. Also PDI does not have projection data for the future
 
  • Like
Reactions: Timbo

DOOM N GLOOM

Membership Revoked
Removed
Account on Hold
Sep 4, 2018
207
224
41
How so? Not sure of the specific methods but seems like PDI is based solely on surveys submitted by pharmacist hiring managers. Obviously that leads very biased results. Even then PDI shows a steady decrease in demand compared to supply with a sharp drop in 2017. Also PDI does not have projection data for the future
Anyone on this forum fill out surveys for PDI? Q3 results should be released soon, right?
 
  • Like
Reactions: MAP2010

BidingMyTime

Lost Shaker Of Salt
10+ Year Member
Oct 2, 2006
3,421
2,403
281
Illinois
Status
Pharmacist
The 2% rate is far from correct. 50% or greater may the real %.
He's saying the 2% rate is correct at the moment for all pharmacists, not just newly graduated pharmacists (and considering that pharmacists working in non-pharmacist jobs are considered employed, but he agrees that 50% will be the future.
 
Apr 14, 2018
4
1
1
Status
Pharmacist
Okay I couldn't find any statistics on how many pharmacists retire per year, but lots of news stories report 10,000 baby boomers retire everyday. So that's 3,650,000 people retiring per year. US population is 325 million. Employment rate according to BLS is 60%, so there are currently 195 million employed people in the US. Thus 1.8% of the US workforce retires per year. BLS reports a total 312,500 pharmacist jobs in 2016. Now let's assume that pharmacists retiring per year reflects the national average, thus there were approximately 5625 pharmacists who retired in 2016 (1.8% of 312,500).

Now let's assume there will be 5625 pharmacists retiring every year for the next 10 years (the actual number may increase marginally every year but not by much). So 1740 new jobs per year (according to BLS) + 5625 retiring per year = 7365 positions opening up per year. Therefore there's going to be 15,000 new grads competing for 7365 positions per year for the next 10 years. That leaves 7,635 unemployed grads every year. That's 50.9% unemployment rate for each graduating class and this is NOT taking into account people who could only find part-time positions. WTF!?!? Someone find a flaw in my calculations because this can't be true.

EDIT: I shouldn't have calculated retirement rate out of total US population. Fixed it so it's calculated from current labor force.
I like your thinking. I am on the ground right now and will say there are a bunch of PRN positions working grads to death and not providing benefits. PRN right now seems to be actually providing a better per hour rate, because they don't have benefits, and FT is stuck at 32 in most positions. While debt load is astronomical, the best advice I would say i throw everything you have at it, but also save for a house downpayment. Much more financial security in home ownership, and as long as you make those monthly payments, your credit isnt gonna get hit for at least 20 years, when you owe all that money to the IRS because of forgiveness. Protip, even if you can't afford taxes that you owe the IRS, they can't take a house from you if its your only house. American dream is still in sight! Also remember, your degree is better regardless of how you look at it. The saturation will be curbed eventually, as it has been in all professional fields. Pharmacy just hasnt caught up. All those freeloaders without debt and bowing out for another career will be a real factor as well. Also when these private institutions turning out new grads cant pay their debt, their creditworthiness will be downgraded, and they will close, lowering numbers of grads. It'll happen, just wait for the debt bubble to hit. Have faith, but you're math is spot on.
 

APN-59 rph

2+ Year Member
Dec 19, 2016
114
55
71
Status
Pharmacist
I like your thinking. I am on the ground right now and will say there are a bunch of PRN positions working grads to death and not providing benefits. PRN right now seems to be actually providing a better per hour rate, because they don't have benefits, and FT is stuck at 32 in most positions. While debt load is astronomical, the best advice I would say i throw everything you have at it, but also save for a house downpayment. Much more financial security in home ownership, and as long as you make those monthly payments, your credit isnt gonna get hit for at least 20 years, when you owe all that money to the IRS because of forgiveness. Protip, even if you can't afford taxes that you owe the IRS, they can't take a house from you if its your only house. American dream is still in sight! Also remember, your degree is better regardless of how you look at it. The saturation will be curbed eventually, as it has been in all professional fields. Pharmacy just hasnt caught up. All those freeloaders without debt and bowing out for another career will be a real factor as well. Also when these private institutions turning out new grads cant pay their debt, their creditworthiness will be downgraded, and they will close, lowering numbers of grads. It'll happen, just wait for the debt bubble to hit. Have faith, but you're math is spot on.
I would suggest getting a little bit of advice on the house part...I can see a lot of old timer houses going on the market..relatively soon....prices could drop if that happens...IF...
 

Modest_anteater

Walgreens @ Austin, Texas.
Nov 12, 2017
1,211
626
41
Dallas, Texas
According to BLS, looking at "employment change", there will be 17,400 new jobs over the next 10 years (2016 to 2026). So assuming linear growth there are 1740 new jobs per year.

According to many sources, schools are churning out 15,000 new grads annually.

So 15,000 new grads competing for 1740 positions per year. That leaves 13,260 (the difference) with no job??? I know I left out the number of pharmacists retiring per year but highly doubt it's anywhere close to 13,260.
Yes you are correct there is a massive imbalance between supply and demand for pharmacists. There will be MANY unemployed pharmacists in the next decade along with even more UNDER employed pharmacists.