INDIANAPOLIS — High on the face of a building that faces the southeast corner of the Statehouse lawn in Indianapolis are the words: “Indiana, a state that works.”
The slogan, introduced a decade ago, underscores the ongoing interest on behalf of the state government to grow the Indiana economy.
On that score, there were a couple of recent setbacks.
Kyle Anderson, assistant professor of business economics at Indiana University’s Kelly School of Business, said he is not concerned with the news.
“I think this is more a blip on the radar screen,” Anderson said. “Overall, hiring is still good. The economy is still strong. It is slowing down and I think our employers are taking notice of that.”
Unemployment in Indiana has hovered around 3% for months. The same is true for Indianapolis.
A review of the most recent data from the US Labor Department shows the number of Hoosiers with a job has been flat for about a year.
Again, Anderson said he remains bullish on the state.
“Indiana’s not a particularly growing population,” he said. “So, with unemployment so low there’s really nowhere for the employment numbers to go. Nowhere for it to go up because so many people are working.”
There is a somewhat different opinion coming out of the national recruiting firm Peak Sales Recruiting, which did an analysis of federal labor data to rank states in terms of the best jobs markets. Indiana landed in the middle of the pack at 25th.
And while the state’s overall outlook is arguably rosy, there are some facets of the local economy to watch.
The housing market has slowed in Central Indiana. According to Redfin, greater Indianapolis has 14% fewer single-family homes on the market than a year ago. Anderson attributes much of that to higher mortgage interest rates.
“Overall signals are mixed right now, but they’re not consistent with an economy headed towards a recession,” said Anderson.
The next assessment of the state’s economy comes Friday when June unemployment figures are expected to be released.