A monthly study finds Iowa’s economy is in better shape now than it’s been for a couple of years. Creighton University economist Dr. Ernie Goss says there’s been vigorous improvement across the Midwest during the summer months, August in particular. The nine-state region showed a real upturn in overall economic activity and produced the best numbers since before the recession began — the highest since April of 2000. Dr. Goss says the recovery of the past several months has been, for the most part, jobless, but he says the newest survey indicates the employment numbers are picking up in Iowa and region-wide.Many of the new hires are workers who’ve had to be retraining and become more flexible to move into new occupations. While utilities are warning homeowners about the expected high costs of heating this winter, Goss says it’s already hurting some industries. He says the “prices paid index” that includes items like commodities has risen for the Midwest for three straight months. He says that’s due primarily to energy prices, and he says there’s the potential for energy prices to slow the growth we’re going to see. Goss says it’s a safe bet hirings will be on the rise as the holiday months approach and he predicts a significantly better employment figures for Iowa by year’s end.
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