If you have been following updates on the economy here in the United States, then it should come as no surprise that there is reason to be optimistic. Unemployment is down to 5.8 percent, which translates to hundreds and thousands of new jobs according to monthly job reports. Attribute these numbers to a political party if you must, but the fact of the matter is the video game industry is partially responsible for creating jobs.
In a report released this week by the Entertainment Software Association, business grew by more than 9 percent annually from 2009 to 2012. With the economy hit as badly as it was in 2009, it is hard to imagine any businesses were able to grow at that rate. In fact, during these years, the US economy was only growing at around 2% annually. High-paying manufacturing jobs were disappearing while some of the creative industries were continuing to generate growth. The gaming industry was responsible for contributing approximately $6 billion to the US economy in 2012.
The study also found that the gaming industry can claim approximately 42,000 employees working throughout 36 states. Estimates put employment as a direct and indirect result of the gaming industry at around 146,000 individuals. With an average salary lying between $90,000 and $100,000 it is easy to see how playing video games for all those years is actually paying off. These numbers may help parents sleep at night when they wonder how to get their kids active and away from the gaming consoles.
According to the Chief Executive Officer Michael Gallagher of the Entertainment Software Association, “The high-energy, high-tech video game industry is rapidly producing some of the most valuable jobs in the U.S. economy.” He also added, “Our industry is one of the nation’s fastest growing economic sectors and represents tens of thousands of high-paying, well-educated professionals, artists, and creators.” A consistent 9 percent economic growth allowed publishers and developers to reinvest in their companies, resulting in increased employment.
As gaming becomes more accessible and technology continues to advance, one has to believe that these numbers will remain consistent for some time.