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Chicago’s economy reached an important turning point in the first quarter of 2010, with job growth resuming after eight consecutive quarters of contraction. While a single quarter of growth does not constitute a trend, the addition of jobs in eight of the 11 primary employment sectors marks a critical first step toward economic recovery.

With job growth forecast to continue at a moderate pace through 2010, the metro area should register a net gain of 58,000 positions this year, the resulting 1.4% increase in non farm payrolls exceeds expectations at the national level. At the same time, Chicago has experienced greater-than-average job cuts in recent years, and it will take several quarters, even years, to recover the 356,000 jobs lost during the recession.

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