The Indiana Business Research Center recently published projections of the state’s labor force that paint a picture I suspect is very common all over the Midwest and Northeast. That is, the state is going to see a flat overall workforce, with the majority of the state expecting a declining labor force. Here’s their map of 2025 projections by county:
This basically means a structural decline in jobs is baked into the cake for most of the state. The state as a whole is projected to experience a decline in the size of its labor force during the 2020s, then resume growth, albeit at low levels. I would not get too spooked by comparisons with the figures for say the 1970s, as this was an era when Baby Boomers were still entering the workforce and there were many women moving from the home to the labor force as well. Nevertheless, it’s a challenging situation for all these states that have weak demographic trends.