The word economist is close to economics, which is the science of money. An economist is a person who practices that science.

If your economics course isn't being taught by an economist, the chances are you should switch sections. In the 16th century, the word was used to describe the person who managed the household, which certainly explains courses in "home economics." But the current meaning of economist — a person who studies the flow of cash and credit between people, institutions, banks, etc. — first developed during the 18th century. Perhaps that's no surprise either, as that's when the global economy truly became, well, global.

Definitions of economist
  1. noun
    an expert in the science of economics
    synonyms: economic expert
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    William Henry Beveridge
    British economist (born in India) whose report on social insurance provided the basis for most of the social legislation on which the welfare state in the United Kingdom is based (1879-1963)
    Milton Friedman
    United States economist noted as a proponent of monetarism and for his opposition to government intervention in the economy (born in 1912)
    Ragnar Anton Kittil Frisch
    Norwegian economist noted for his work in econometrics (1895-1973)
    John Kenneth Galbraith
    United States economist (born in Canada) who served as ambassador to India (born in 1908)
    Friedrich August von Hayek
    English economist (born in Austria) noted for work on the optimum allocation of resources (1899-1992)
    William Stanley Jevons
    English economist and logician who contributed to the development of the theory of marginal utility (1835-1882)
    John Maynard Keynes
    English economist who advocated the use of government monetary and fiscal policy to maintain full employment without inflation (1883-1946)
    Tjalling Charles Koopmans
    United States economist (born in the Netherlands) (1910-1985)
    Simon Kuznets
    United States economist (born in Russia) who developed a method for using a country's gross national product to estimate its economic growth (1901-1985)
    Arthur Laffer
    United States economist who proposed the Laffer curve (born in 1940)
    Stephen Butler Leacock
    Canadian economist best remembered for his humorous writings (1869-1944)
    Wassily Leontief
    United States economist (born in Russia) who devised an input-output method of economic analysis (1906-1999)
    Thomas Robert Malthus
    an English economist who argued that increases in population would outgrow increases in the means of subsistence (1766-1834)
    Karl Marx
    founder of modern communism; wrote the Communist Manifesto with Engels in 1848; wrote Das Kapital in 1867 (1818-1883)
    James Edward Meade
    English economist noted for his studies of international trade and finance (1907-1995)
    John Stuart Mill
    English philosopher and economist remembered for his interpretations of empiricism and utilitarianism (1806-1873)
    Jean Monnet
    French economist who advocated a Common Market in Europe (1888-1979)
    Karl Gunnar Myrdal
    Swedish economist (1898-1987)
    Vilfredo Pareto
    Italian sociologist and economist whose theories influenced the development of fascism in Italy (1848-1923)
    David Ricardo
    English economist who argued that the laws of supply and demand should operate in a free market (1772-1823)
    Joseph Alois Schumpeter
    United States economist (born in Czechoslovakia) (1883-1950)
    Herbert Alexander Simon
    United States economist and psychologist who pioneered in the development of cognitive science (1916-2001)
    Adam Smith
    Scottish economist who advocated private enterprise and free trade (1723-1790)
    Richard Henry Tawney
    English economist remembered for his studies of the development of capitalism (1880-1962)
    Jan Tinbergen
    Dutch economist noted for his work in econometrics (1903-1994)
    James Tobin
    United States economist (1918-2002)
    Anne Robert Jacques Turgot
    French economist who in 1774 was put in control of finances by Louis XVI; his proposals for reforms that involved abolishing feudal privileges made him unpopular with the aristocracy and in 1776 he was dismissed (1727-1781)
    Thorstein Bunde Veblen
    United States economist who wrote about conspicuous consumption (1857-1929)
    Baroness Jackson of Lodsworth
    English economist and conservationist (1914-1981)
    First Baron Passfield
    English sociologist and economist and a central member of the Fabian Society (1859-1947)
    Helen Laura Sumner Woodbury
    United States social economist (1876-1933)
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    econometrician, econometrist
    an economist who uses statistical and mathematical methods
    macroeconomic expert, macroeconomist
    an economist who specializes in macroeconomics
    microeconomic expert, microeconomist
    an economist who specializes in microeconomics
    an advocate of the theory that economic fluctuations are caused by increases or decreases in the supply of money
    an advocate of bimetallism
    type of:
    social scientist
    someone expert in the study of human society and its personal relationships
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