Indiana, Indy stage small employment gains

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Indiana and the Indianapolis area eked out a few more jobs in July, government figures released Friday show.

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development reported that the state added 8,700 jobs from June and 47,600 from July 2009—increases of 0.3 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively.

Still, the state’s unemployment rate increased by a sliver to 10.2 percent, its fourth straight month in double digits.

The number of unemployed Hoosiers decreased from 321,002 in June to 319,406 in July.

The department noted Indiana seasonally adjusted employment has grown 2.4 percent this year, four times faster than the U.S. rate.

The U.S. Department of Labor said Friday that only Alaska posted a greater year-over-year percentage increase in employment, 1.9 percent. Indiana also added the second-greatest number of jobs during the 12 months, following Texas.

July’s gain means the state has recovered about a third of the jobs lost during the recession and its aftermath.

While meager, the gains nonetheless are additional evidence the state is unlikely to slide back into recession anytime soon.

On Thursday, Indiana University said its Leading Index for Indiana, which uses a different set of statistics to predict economic activity several months in the future, staged a slight uptick in July following two months of decline.

The university’s Indiana Business Research Center had been watching to see if the index would retreat for a third month in a row; had the index slipped in July, center researchers would have started drilling deeper into the data to see whether another recession was on the way.

Job numbers climbed broadly in July over June. The tiny category of information and an omnibus grab bag of industries called “other services” suffered reversals, as did business and professional services, which includes temporary workers.

Temp workers are watched closely to determine if companies are still playing it safe by not hiring permanent workers. The category saw a big upswing from a year earlier, to nearly 80,000; however, the government does not adjust the figure for seasonal fluctuations, so it’s difficult to judge the significance of a decline of 300 workers from June.

In the Indianapolis metro area, the non-seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 9.2 percent in July, up from 8.6 percent in July 2009. Figures for the metro level are not seasonally adjusted.

Most industries in the Indianapolis-Carmel metropolitan statistical area added jobs.

Comparing July with July 2009, Indianapolis saw employment droop 11 percent in construction, a large category that tends to pay its workers relatively well.
As was the case at the state level, temporary worker employment shot up.

Manufacturing, transportation and warehousing stood even with a year earlier.

Leisure and hospitality shed workers, as did manufacturing of non-durable goods—products designed to be consumed within three years. Eli Lilly and Co.’s ongoing layoffs might have contributed to the decline in non-durable manufacturing.

Government continued adding employment, a long-term trend in the metro area as expanding suburbs hire teachers, and firefighters and other public servants.


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  1. How much you wanna bet, that 70% of the jobs created there (after construction) are minimum wage? And Harvey is correct, the vast majority of residents in this project will drive to their jobs, and to think otherwise, is like Harvey says, a pipe dream. Someone working at a restaurant or retail store will not be able to afford living there. What ever happened to people who wanted to build buildings, paying for it themselves? Not a fan of these tax deals.

  2. Uh, no GeorgeP. The project is supposed to bring on 1,000 jobs and those people along with the people that will be living in the new residential will be driving to their jobs. The walkable stuff is a pipe dream. Besides, walkable is defined as having all daily necessities within 1/2 mile. That's not the case here. Never will be.

  3. Brad is on to something there. The merger of the Formula E and IndyCar Series would give IndyCar access to International markets and Formula E access the Indianapolis 500, not to mention some other events in the USA. Maybe after 2016 but before the new Dallara is rolled out for 2018. This give IndyCar two more seasons to run the DW12 and Formula E to get charged up, pun intended. Then shock the racing world, pun intended, but making the 101st Indianapolis 500 a stellar, groundbreaking event: The first all-electric Indy 500, and use that platform to promote the future of the sport.

  4. No, HarveyF, the exact opposite. Greater density and closeness to retail and everyday necessities reduces traffic. When one has to drive miles for necessities, all those cars are on the roads for many miles. When reasonable density is built, low rise in this case, in the middle of a thriving retail area, one has to drive far less, actually reducing the number of cars on the road.

  5. The Indy Star announced today the appointment of a new Beverage Reporter! So instead of insightful reports on Indy pro sports and Indiana college teams, you now get to read stories about the 432nd new brewery open or some obscure Hoosier winery winning a county fair blue ribbon. Yep, that's the coverage we Star readers crave. Not.