Welcome to the archives for NewsTalk, an IBJ blog published from November 2007 through December 2010.

Indy job recovery still underway

June 18, 2010

On the surface, it appears that the economic recovery took a small step backward in the Indianapolis metro area in May. Dig deeper, an Indiana University researcher says, and the infantile recovery still seems to be cooking.

Matt Kinghorn of the Indiana Business Research Center in the Kelley School of Business allows that the region had 4,600 fewer jobs in May than a year earlier, when the economy was still in decline. The figures were released today.

But the Indianapolis area looked good in May compared to April this year, Kinghorn adds. Only one other April-to-May transition in the past decade saw a larger increase than the 13,500 additional jobs posted this year.

Tracking Indianapolis from month to month is tricky because the government doesn't adjust the figures for seasonal fluctuations. However, he notes, even after accounting for the seasonal increase in such jobs as construction and the once-a-decade influx of census workers, Indianapolis still generated jobs. Not many, but some.

An encouraging sign is the increase in temporary workers, often a sign companies are ramping up production. Some firms hire temps to avoid committing to full-time workers until the economy firms up enough to justify the risk.

“It’s cautious optimism,” Kinghorn says. “We need to wait a little longer before we can say Indianapolis has turned a corner.”

What are your thoughts?

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