One of the state’s economic indicators shows slow growth. The Flash Index comes from the University of Illinois every month, averaging personal income, consumer spending, and corporate earnings. With 100 the break-even between growth and shrinkage, the index has been at 106 or near that for months. The movement over the past month has been from 106.2 to 106-even.
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What should be done, and who should be doing it? “It's beyond the control of any one person, any one institution,” says the index’s author, Fred Giertz, an economics professor at the U. of I. at Urbana-Champaign. “There’s always moderate improvements. Illinois has the longstanding budget deficit to deal with. There’s not going to be an immediate impact. “The rate of growth is not very rapid, and we still have this broader problem of bringing people back into the workforce.”