94 years of economic insights for Indiana

The IBR is a publication of the Indiana Business Research Center at IU's Kelley School of Business

Spring 2002

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Dissecting Indiana's Decline in Personal Income
By Morton J. Marcus

Indiana's Population Tops 6.1 Million
By John Besl

For the Record

Each year a full cycle of state, county, city and township population estimates are reviewed by this office, which serves as the state's official representative to the Federal-State Cooperative on Population Estimates, a program of the U.S. Census Bureau.

IBRC demographer, John Besl, submits questions and comments on those estimates that may be out of sync with what we know about population dynamics in the Hoosier State. When the Bureau publishes without revision, we use these pages (and our web site) to put our research-based disagreements on the record.

With the latest release of 2001 county-level estimates, Starke County showed a loss of more than 1,700 persons since the census in 2000. Vital events data and other information, including conversations with people in Starke County, did not yield confirmation of such a significant (7.53%) loss. Demographic questions focused on the IRS migration data, since the out-migration figure resulting from those data seem to be the driving force in the decline. While the Census Bureau did respond to challenge, it wasn't by much. Two points: (1) Indiana has a voice in the population estimates. (2) When the Census Bureau does not or is not able to make changes to these estimates, we put our disagreements, on behalf of the state, on the research record.

On the economic front, research by Indiana Business Research Center economist Jim Smith recently appeared in print and on television news shows, becoming the talk of the state. His findings focused on the decline in Indiana's per capita personal income relative to the nation (the Indiana Fiscal Policy Institute also released its income study about the same time) and the significant job losses Indiana has suffered since January 2000. Interestingly, the 90,000+ Indiana job loss was predicted in these pages by Smith in the Outlook 2002 issue published just last December.

As it has since 1925, the Indiana Business Research Center remains committed to research that provides an accurate representation of what is occurring in our state's economy and population. —COR