Men in routine jobs, such as bus drivers and refuse collectors, are more likely to die early figures show.
Bus drivers were among the professionals most likely to die early
The Office for National Statistics data showed routine workers were 2.8 times more likely to die by the age of 64 than high-level managers.
Professionals, such as lawyers and architects, also had low early deaths rates in England and Wales.
Experts said these workers were least likely to die in accidents, violent attacks and from suicide.
Professor Danny Dorling, an expert in health inequalities at Sheffield University, said: "It is not the professions that are causing the deaths, unlike when miners were dying.
"Instead, the biggest causes of death in this age group are accidents, violence and suicide and that is linked to the how much you are paid and valued in your job.
"Those in better paid, more prestigious jobs are less likely to suffer violence, behave differently, are treated better and value their work more."
The findings come as life expectancy continues to rise.
The latest figures, from 2004 to 2006, show that for the first time all local areas in the UK had a male expectancy above 70 - female life expectancy has been above that age for some time.
Last year's results showed that Glasgow City was the only place in the UK with life expectancy below 70.
The average life expectancy for men is 76.9 and for women 81.3.
The statistics on early deaths by occupation from 2001 to 2003 revealed that there were 513 deaths per 100,000 for routine workers.
This compared to 182 per 100,000 for high-level managers, including chief executives of major companies.
Higher professionals had a rate of 206 per 100,000, while self-employed workers, such as shopkeepers and builders, were just above the 300 mark.
After the routine workers, semi-routine staff, including postmen and security guards, were most likely to die early with 473 deaths per 100,000.