updated: 12/21/2012 1:35:02 PM

Hicks: Stagnation 'Gripping' Indiana Economy

InsideINdianaBusiness.com Report

A Ball State University economist says Indiana's unemployment rate is holding at 8 percent because the state and national economy is "stuck in neutral." Center for Business and Economic Research Director Michael Hicks says even so, Indiana's manufacturing and transportation job gains are "much stronger" than the national rates.

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December 21, 2012

News Release

Ball State economist Michael Hicks says it is no surprise that Indiana’s unemployment rate is holding at 8 percent for the second consecutive month because the state’s economy—like the nation’s—is stuck in neutral.

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development says the state’s unemployment rate was 8 percent in November, unchanged from the previous month

“The nation as a whole is stuck in neutral and unemployment rates are unlikely to get much better through the coming year,” says Hicks, director of Ball State’s Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER). “The inevitable tax increases and spending cuts that will begin in two weeks are likely to further erode job gains. Indiana suffers from the stagnation which has gripped our national economy.”

Seasonal employment variability is expected, and a slow growth in construction employment in early spring will likely mark a turnaround in this sector as the housing market continues to strengthen across the nation, he says.

“Indiana manufacturing and transportation employment gains are much stronger than the national rates,” Hicks says. “However, overall economic pressures next year may dampen future job growth in that area.”

Source: Ball State University

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