Sep 18, 2023 - Business

More than two-thirds of native Hoosiers stay in Indiana

Illustration of a suitcase with a sticker shaped like Indiana.

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

People who are born in Indiana apparently like to stay in Indiana.

Driving the news: Nearly 69% of native Hoosiers were still living in Indiana in 2021, and the state has an outmigration rate of 22 out of 1,000 residents, according to a new Dallas Fed report.

  • The report used U.S. Census Bureau data to rank each state's "stickiness," determining which are best at retaining their native residents.
  • Outmigration measures both people born here and people who have moved here from elsewhere.

Why it matters: Residents sticking around is key to maintaining a stable population and workforce, which is vital to economic growth, per the study.

Share of people born in a state who are still living there as of 2021
Data: Dallas Fed via U.S. Census; Map: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

Zoom out: Indiana came in 18th nationally for "stickiness." Texas came in first with 82%, and Wyoming came in last at about 45%.

  • Four of the five "stickiest" states had below-average state and local tax burdens, the report's authors pointed out.

The intrigue: Indiana ranks 9th nationally in overall state business tax climate, while Wyoming — which does not have corporate or individual taxes — ranks 1st, according to the Tax Foundation think tank.

Threat level: A 2022 report from Ascend Indiana and EmployIndy found the pandemic "permanently altered" Indiana's job landscape, accelerating job growth in occupations requiring a degree while non-degreed jobs shrunk.

  • Crucially, the report found that too few high schoolers are pursuing the degrees needed to fill those jobs.
  • A recent TechPoint analysis highlighted that the state's demand for tech industry workers is surpassing the supply of workers needed to fill those jobs.

Of note: The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has established a scholarship program designed to retain its talent by covering local high schoolers' tuition at Indiana colleges or universities.


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