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Metro Detroit continues relatively strong economic recovery

Paul Hitzelberger
United Photo Works

New data from the Brookings Institution shows a relatively strong economic recovery going on in Metro Detroit.

The Brookings Institution’s MetroMonitor report has been watching how the country’s 100 largest metro areas recover from the Great Recession.

Metro Detroit has posted one of the strongest recoveries—in part because the area slid into an earlier and deeper recession than most places around the country.

For the third quarter of 2012, Brookings ranks the Detroit-Livonia-Warren metro ninth overall in terms of recovery.

Employment has increased across most sectors of the economy in the past year, with manufacturing jumping 5.3%.

Overall economic activity is up almost 10% from three years ago, though it ticked up only 0.5% in the past quarter.

However, the unemployment rate has ticked up a bit over the past year. It now stands at 10.7%--significantly lower than the 16% peak in the third quarter of 2009.

But now for some perspective: these gains make a fairly small dent in the region’s overall economic decline since the early 2000s—especially given the huge number of jobs lost during the last decade.

Even with the recent gains, there are now more about 12% fewer jobs in Metro Detroit than there were in 2004.

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Radio in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
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