A long-term economic forecast from the Center for Business and Economic Research at Ball State University is projecting sluggish growth for the foreseeable future. Director Mike Hicks says a bright spot for Indiana is the possibility that wage growth "may begin in earnest" next year.
In the report, the center forecasts Indiana’s Gross Domestic Product to grow about 2.1 percent in 2016 and projects the state will add more than 32,000 workers. Hicks expects Indiana’s population to grow to 7.055 million by 2030, with the strongest growth in the Indianapolis and Fort Wayne areas. However, he believes a troubling trend will continue with rural counties expected to experience significant population loss over then next 10 years.
He says the short-term economic forecast relies heavily on the timing of the Federal Reserve raising interest rates. He says the expected increase in the coming weeks "will have little effect on most Hoosiers," and believes there could be more increases next year. The "big unknown," Hicks says, is the slowing international economy.
Hicks presented the forecast today at the 20th annual Indiana Economic Outlook luncheon in Muncie. You can see the report by clicking here.