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Economist believes job creation is picking up

Posted: Wednesday, March 14, 2012 Report

A Ball State University economist believes the state's January employment report suggests a faster recovery in Indiana, compared to the rest of the nation. Center for Business and Economic Research Director Mike Hicks says the state is on track to nearly return to pre-recession employment levels by winter. He believes it will take the nation as a whole more than three years to reach that target.

Hicks says that adding 13,000 private sector jobs in January - the largest monthly increase in a year - is more unambiguous good news for Indiana.

Indiana's unemployment rate dropped to 8.7 percent in January from a revised rate of 8.9 percent the previous month.

"The academic research and many forecasters use the growth of the labor force as a leading indicator of recovery, so this is good news for the state," says Hicks, director of Ball State's Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER). "More importantly, the job creation numbers are at the level to have us back to nearly full employment by winter. That's a big contrast to the nation as a whole, which is more than three years away from recovery."

Source: Ball State University