Last week, we accelerated the migration of people to Indiana between 2015 and 2019. This week, we are speeding up the process and looking at emigration from Indiana with the resulting net and gross migration numbers.
Illinois gave us the largest number of inbound migrants, 31,900 between 2015 and 2019. Illinois also received the largest number of our outbound migrants, 15,400. These flows (inbound minus outbound) gave us a net in-migration from Illinois of 16,500. This positive net inflow from Illinois alone accounted for 47% of Indiana’s population growth due to migration.
Excluding Illinois, 22 states plus Puerto Rico recorded positive net entries in Indiana of 8,700. The leaders were New Jersey (1,700) and California (1,100). Likewise, Indiana’s net outflows totaled 16,400 to 26 states and DC. The leaders were Florida (4,200), Texas (2,000), Tennessee (1,500), Michigan (1,400) and Arizona (1,100).
Adding the incoming and outgoing flows gives a gross flow, the total number of people moving between two states. Again, Illinois led with 47,300 (17%) of all of those 282,200 people leaving for another country or entering Indiana from another state.
Our gross migration was over 10,000 people with six states other than Illinois. Three of these six states were our neighbors: Ohio (24,400),
Kentucky (21,700) and Michigan (19,800). The other three were the “sun states” of Florida (22,700), Texas (16,200) and California (13,600).
A high level of gross migration does not necessarily indicate an imbalance in inflows and outflows. The gross flow from Indiana to Ohio, a high gross migration, resulted in a net in migration of only 430 people; Our gross migration with Kentucky was 21,700 and resulted in a net emigration of only 24 people.
It is common to use these numbers with words like “won” and “lost”. This mode of expression confirms the idea that population increases are positive and desirable. Population declines are then negative and not beneficial.
This type of thinking about the evolution of the population is several generations old and often lacking careful consideration. Some people see a benefit for themselves in growth. More people mean more demand for land, housing, food and washing machines. More people could increase attendance at the opera house or the racetrack, depending on your taste.
Others see more people as competing for jobs, parking, and golf tee times. More people means more school rooms, more garbage, more pollution, more overcrowding, more noise and other costly or nasty aspects of life.
The people and businesses of this country have the nominal right to move wherever they want. Thus, more households and businesses confirm our location as a desirable place to live and invest. However, if more people move than move in, we have failed to maintain their love, or at least their loyalty to our values ââand appreciation for our efforts.
Clearly, the Census Bureau data gives us pause.