Fort Wayne, IN – December 2023 Jobs Report – Bright Outlook Amidst Shifting Landscape

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December 2023 marked a positive month for Fort Wayne’s job market, with unemployment dropping to a record low of 2.5%. This report analyzes the key trends, growth sectors, and future outlook for the Fort Wayne Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA).


  • Unemployment rate at record low: 2.5% in December 2023, down from 3.7% in November and 3.4% in December 2022 (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Job growth: While preliminary, data suggests a slight decrease in total employment compared to November 2023. However, year-over-year growth remains positive (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Strong healthcare and manufacturing sectors: Healthcare and Social Assistance, and Manufacturing continued to be major job creators in December (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Shifting landscape: Some industries like Leisure and Hospitality saw job losses, reflecting national trends (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

What Industries and Occupations Grew:

  • Healthcare and Social Assistance: Added 2,400 jobs in December, with Registered Nurses and Nursing Assistants topping the list of growing occupations (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Manufacturing: Steady growth, with Industrial Machinery Mechanics and Assemblers & Fabricators in high demand (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Professional and Business Services: Experienced moderate growth, driven by occupations like Software Developers and Computer Systems Analysts (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

What Industries and Occupations Shrank:

  • Leisure and Hospitality: Lost 400 jobs in December, impacting Waiters and Waitresses, and Cooks (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Retail Trade: Declined slightly, with Retail Salespersons and Cashiers seeing job losses (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Administrative and Support Services: Modest decline, with impacts on occupations like Office Clerks and Administrative Assistants (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Compare to Same Month Last Year:

  • Unemployment rate significantly lower than December 2022 (3.4%), reflecting a tighter labor market (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Total employment likely experienced positive growth year-over-year, despite the December 2023 dip (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Similar industry trends, with Healthcare and Social Assistance leading job creation (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Compare to Previous Month:

  • Unemployment rate decreased considerably from November 2023 (3.7%) (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Total employment showed a preliminary decline compared to November 2023 (Bureau of Labor Statistics).
  • Healthcare and Social Assistance continued to see significant job growth, while Leisure and Hospitality experienced losses (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Future Outlook:

  • Experts predict continued low unemployment in Fort Wayne throughout 2024 (Indiana Business Research Center).
  • Job growth expected in Healthcare, Manufacturing, and Professional and Business Services (Indiana Department of Workforce Development).
  • Potential challenges include competition for talent and inflationary pressures (Indiana Economic Development Corporation).

10 Growing Occupations:

  1. Registered Nurses
  2. Software Developers and Computer Systems Analysts
  3. Physical Therapists
  4. Home Health Aides and Personal Care Aides
  5. Physician Assistants
  6. Wind Turbine Service Technicians
  7. Solar Photovoltaic Installers
  8. Truck Drivers
  9. Sales Representatives
  10. Marketing Specialists

10 Companies Hiring Now:

  1. Lutheran Health Network
  2. Parkview Health
  3. General Motors
  4. Fort Wayne Community Schools
  5. Lincoln Financial Group
  6. United Technologies Corporation
  7. Do it Best Corp.
  8. Northeast Indiana Community Foundation
  9. City of Fort Wayne
  10. Purdue University Fort Wayne