Constance Hunter: Don’t Fear the Robots!

Automation and technology are driving fears in the labor market of a coming robot apocalypse. These fears are wildly overblown, says Constance Hunter, Chief Economist at KPMG. Previously, Hunter was Deputy Chief Investment Officer for Fixed Income at AXA Investment Managers. She serves on the board of the National Association for Business Economics (NABE).

Hunter points out our tendency to ignore the many new jobs that are being created in technology. She also points to the ongoing unfilled high-paying technical jobs. There will be tremendous demand for these sorts of skills for decades to come. Not only are new jobs being created, but they are better paying and more fulfilling work than the repetitive, low-skill, low-wage jobs that are being destroyed.

Hunter also notes that big productivity gains are not being evenly distributed. They vary not only by sector within them. The leading 5 percent of companies utilize technology throughout the entire firm, capturing most of the productivity gains.

Some of her favorite books are referenced here; the full transcript is here.

You can stream/download the full conversation, including the podcast extras, on BloombergiTunesOvercast, and Soundcloud. Our earlier podcasts can all be found on iTunesSoundcloudOvercast and Bloomberg.

Next week, we speak with Jack Devine, a 32-year veteran of the Central Intelligence Agency (“CIA”) serving as both Acting Director and Associate Director of CIA’s operations. He is the author of Good Hunting: An American Spymaster’s Story.



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