Indiana officials were celebrating the lowest employment in over a decade and a half as Indiana’s seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate fell two-tenths of one percentage point in December of last to only 4 percent. Unemployment has not been this low in Indiana since 2001, Experts believe such low unemployment is going to continue to put upward pressure on employers to wage raises.
On Tuesday, the 24th, the Indiana Department of Workplace Development reported that the state unemployment had dipped to four percent in December of last year, down from 4.4 percent in October and 4.5 percent in September. .This was based on an increase in the labor force of more than 28,400 workers to a work force of 3.3 million workers. Losses in education and the financial sector were offset by gains in manufacturing and construction. Indiana’s unemployment rate is far better than their surrounding neighbors with Kentucky being the closest at 4.8 percent, with Ohio at 4.9 and Michigan close by at five percent. Illinois is doing much worse at 5.7 percent unemployment. National unemployment is at 4.7 percent.
As the number of people looking for jobs dwindles to these levels, the job market has shifted in favor of workers. Workers with experience and training are going to be able demand substantially higher wages. When ask about wage pressure, Ellen Cutter, director of strategy and research for the Greater Fort Wayne Inc.’s, commented, “When unemployment rates get this low, certainly workers can be more choosy,” she said. “Employers are put in the position of rethinking the wages and benefits they offer to get workers through the door.”