The civic center opened three decades ago around the time the much larger Allstate Arena did in Rosemont, but never packed in the same crowds. Taxpayer subsidies kept the lights on, and the facility broke even last year after expenses were slashed by 30 percent.
Displaced workers and the young alike flocked to colleges during the recession, a trend that is now ebbing as job growth accelerates.
The surge in January employment at the national level may provide some hope that Indiana's jobless picture may improve early in 2012. But people watching the local labor market say it's difficult to make growth projections in NWI because 2011 featured both sobering and encouraging trends.
The surge in January employment at the national level may provide some hope that Indiana's jobless picture may improve early in 2012.
Economics is called the dismal science, and the many economic analyses and forecasts for Northwest Indiana in recent weeks show why.
Younger workers are disproportionately affected by recessions and always have been, which gives economists insight into the long-term consequences of stumbling out of the gate into the job market, Don Coffin said.
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