Indiana's Economic Climate

Indiana's Economic Climate

Friday, June 8, 2018

Indiana’s economy continues to thrive as the Indiana General Assembly prioritizes putting skilled workers in high-demand positions and encouraging businesses to grow or relocate to our state.

For more than four years, Indiana’s unemployment rate has remained lower than the national rate and the rates of all neighboring states. In addition, according to the most recent data from the federal government’s Bureau of Economic Analysis, Indiana has the third-highest real per-capita income growth in the nation.

One reason the state’s unemployment rate continues to be one of the lowest in the country is due to out-of-state companies relocating and expanding in Indiana. Some of the many examples include:

  • Auto-parts manufacturer ElringKlinger announced plans in March to establish a new facility in Fort Wayne, creating up to 150 new jobs by 2022;

  • The information technology company Infosys recently announced it will build its new technology hub in Indianapolis, creating 3,000 new jobs; and

  • In New Albany, the Sazerac Company, one of the oldest family-owned distilling companies in the country, plans to create 110 jobs with a new packaging plant by 2021.

Examples like these are why Chief Executive Magazine, Area Development Magazine and Site Selection Magazine recently ranked Indiana in the top 10 states for doing business.

There are nearly 500,000 small businesses in Indiana that employ more than 1.2 million Hoosiers. This is because Indiana’s strong economy is advantageous to small businesses and entrepreneurs. In fact, the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council’s “Small Business Policy Index 2018” ranked Indiana the eighth most entrepreneur-friendly state in the nation.

Indiana’s pro-business position gives us an advantage over neighboring states when it comes to dealing with the ever-changing economic climate, but there are still areas where improvements can be made. One of the biggest long-term challenges is a skills gap between available jobs and skilled labor. Recently, the Indiana Chamber of Commerce conducted a survey and found that nearly one-third of employers responded by saying they felt that filling an open position is their biggest challenge. Nearly half of the employers reported that they left an open job unfilled in 2017 due to lack of qualified candidates.

To address this issue and shrink the skills gap, the General Assembly passed Senate Enrolled Act 50 during the 2018 session, which establishes the Governor’s Workforce Cabinet. This 21-person cabinet, which replaces a 43-member State Workforce Innovation Council, will streamline oversight of Indiana’s workforce development programs and help Hoosiers find job training so they can fill open positions.

For more information on our unemployment rate, click here