An Economic trend is a path that the manufacture and trade in goods and services takes, taking into account the differences and changes in market demand, government influence and technological advancement. Economic trends vary continuously and at a different pace in various countries and regions in the world, for a lot of factors come into play in each of them. Current economic trends were not a feature in the distant pastand they certainly will not be in the future.
A major economic trend that was being practised in the West and got a major boost in the early 90s after the fall of the Berlin Wall is the adoption of the free market economies, that is, Capitalism.This is where property and wealth, and the rights there-of, are owned by an individual person or organisation, as opposed to communal ownership. More former Communist countries are joining Capitalism. Consequently, there's an opening up of opportunities in levels not previously possible. An individual can now start up his own small firm and have the confidence to expand it with the security of his government's backing.There is therefore more willingness to invest, thus creating more job opportunities for the jobless. People are also able and free to put their skills and talentsto profitable use. There is, as a result, the emergence of the 'person' brand that manufacturers and firms can use toadvertise their products. A good example is Usain Bolt, the 100 metres runner. The job market has therefore undergone diversification in the Capitalist world.
Another trend is the adoption by firms of progressively advanced technology to make their production easier, safer and quicker, and therefore better fit their market's specifications. This involves the use of capital-intensive production techniques. Job seekers are therefore in perpetual competition as they look out for opportunities to improve their knowledge and expertise on the newest technologies and procedures. Another effect is due to the fact that technology is fast replacing labour more than proportionally. More and more people are as a result seeking self employment as a substitute. Firms are also investing more and more heavily on research in an attempt to devise ways of producing more output at low cost. The effect is that the job market's emphasis is increasingly on research methods.
The desire by firms to increase their market share and thereby make higher profits has seen increasingly frequent merges between firms, both horizontally - firms in the same production level - and vertically - firms in different production levels. This has two main effects on the job market. First, there is intermittent retrenchment of portions of the workforce as the firms endeavour to trim their wage expenditure to profitable and manageable levels. The second effect is that there is demand for qualified personellto run such huge businesses. The job market is forced to adjust accordingly to meet these new demands.
Some countries with economic endowments like high population, technological advancements and mineral deposits are experiencing high levels of growth. Examples include Japan, the U.S., Britain, and lately, Brazil, India and China. Two major effects are observed on the job market. There is heavy brain drain from developing countries as both qualified and unqualified job-seekers migrate to these nations in search of better returns.The countries of origin suffer shortages in such professions as Medicine asa result. In contrast, investment levels in the developed nationssoar, bringing down unemployment levels and increasing national output.
Political and economic integrationis another major trend in the world. Countries are increasingly joining economic and political unions with their neighbours for purposes of forming bloc markets for import bargains and selling blocs for monopoly-like domination of world markets. One effect on the job market is that there is free migration of citizens across borders.This opens up the job market to international competition. A negative effect is when some citizens feel that 'their jobs' are being taken by 'foreigners' and act to push for government reforms to curb immigration to 'safeguard' their jobs.
Due to the pressure to create more jobs for the growing population, there is the economic trendof the growth of the service sector as an alternative for manufacture and sale of goods. Insurance, Transport, Law-basedservices, communication services etc. are increasingly a major economic sector even in developing countries. The job market is forced to adjust and prepare for the challenges this sector poses.
The challenges of huge populations vis-a-vis low levels of available employment opportunitiesact to fosternon-social economic activities in the society. Activitiessuch as prostitution, pornography, kidnappings and other extortion rings and the sale of sub-standard goods and services now have a major impact on the job market. The irony is that these activities normally pay handsomely and thus attract more people into business.They are now almost on a par with other economic activities in competition for impact on the job market.
In summary, there is an endless chain of economic trends, which are dynamic in nature. There is no guarantee that this will stop, as long as the world is in existence.