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Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers

Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers
Quick Facts : Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers*
2010 Median Pay$35,170
Entry Level EducationHigh school diploma or equivalent
Work Experience in Related OccupationNone
Number of Jobs, 201239,200
Job Outlook-5% (Decline moderately)
Employment Change-2,000


Jewelers and precious stone and metal workers design, manufacture, and sell jewelry. They also adjust, repair, and appraise gems and jewelry. New technology is helping to produce high-quality jewelry at a reduced cost and in less time. Jewelers also use lasers to weld metals together with no seams or blemishes, improving the quality and appearance of jewelry.

What Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers Do

  • Examine and grade diamonds and other gems
  • Create jewelry from gold, silver, and precious gemstones
  • Shape metal to hold the gems when making individual pieces
  • Smooth joints and rough spots and polish smoothed areas
  • Inspect finished products to ensure proper gem spacing and metal shine

Work Environment

Jewelers and precious stone and metal workers spend a lot of their time at a workbench, using different tools and chemicals. Almost half are self-employed, and many work from home and sell their products at trade and craft shows on weekends. Others are employed in jewelry stores, repair shops, and manufacturing plants.
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Job Outlook

Employment of jewelers and precious stone and metal workers is expected to decline 5 percent from 2010 to 2020. Low-skilled workers will likely face limited opportunities because most jewelry manufacturing is now done outside of the country.
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Pay

The average salary for jewelers and precious stone and metal workers was $35,170 in May 2010.
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Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers*
Average Annual Salary, May 2010

Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers

35170

Construction Occupations

43910.3704

All Jobs in the U.S.

52312.5223
Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers*
Percent Change in Employment

Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers

-5.10204

Construction Occupations

21.314657794104683

All Jobs in the U.S.

15.767561808929724

Becoming a Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers

Jewelers have traditionally learned their trade through long-term on-the-job training. This method is still common, particularly in jewelry manufacturing, but a growing number of workers now learn their skills at trade schools. Many trade schools offer training for jewelers. Programs vary from 6 months to 1 year, and many teach students how to design, cast, set, and polish jewelry and gems, as well as how to use and care for a jeweler's tools and equipment.
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