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Indiana Business Research Center

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Indiana Business Research Center

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Last modified: Thursday, December 20, 2012

Census estimates: Indiana saw sluggish population growth in 2012

Dec. 20, 2012

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana's annual population growth rate declined for the sixth consecutive year in 2012, according to population estimates released today by the U.S. Census Bureau and analyzed by the Indiana Business Research Center at Indiana University's Kelley School of Business, which represents the state to the Census Bureau.

Indiana added 20,981 residents (a 0.32 percent increase) from 2011 to 2012. The state's annual rate of growth dropped from 0.41 percent in 2011 and was Indiana's slowest one-year growth rate since 1986. The numeric increase was barely half of the state's average annual growth of roughly 40,300 from 2000 to 2010.

"Most areas of the country have seen a slowdown in population growth since the onset of the Great Recession," said Matt Kinghorn, IBRC state demographer. "In fact, while the U.S. growth rate did tick up slightly last year to 0.75 percent, the country has been growing slower over the last couple of years than at any time since the mid-1940s."

Indiana's growth rate just outpaced neighboring Kentucky (0.31 percent) and was well ahead of Illinois (0.1 percent), Michigan (0.1 percent) and Ohio (0.0 percent). Indiana's numeric population growth from 2011 to 2012 ranked as the 22nd largest among states, and its rate of growth ranked 37th. With 6.54 million residents, Indiana ranked as the nation's 16th most populous state in 2012. Arizona moved past Indiana last year to claim the 15th spot.

A relatively strong net out-migration from the state accounts for much of the slowdown in growth. Indiana had an estimated net outflow of nearly 4,600 residents in 2012. This marks the third consecutive year that the state has posted a net out-migration.

The number of births in the state was also down from more than 84,800 in 2011 to an estimated 83,300 last year. In all, Indiana had a natural population increase (the difference between the number of births and deaths) of nearly 25,600 residents in 2012.

For more information about these estimates, go to the population topic page at STATS Indiana.

The IBRC also released the Outlook 2013 edition of the Indiana Business Review, a unique collaboration that captures the forecasts and insights of not only Indiana University economists but those of economists from universities throughout the state, including Anderson, Ball State, Indiana State, Purdue, Rose-Hulman and the Southern Indiana.

The IBRC is part of a national network of State Data Centers and acts as the official state representative to the Census Bureau on matters relating to the census and population estimates. The IBRC also develops and maintains STATS Indiana, the award-winning, state-supported Web service.