Economy in recovery mode - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

Economy in recovery mode

By Ashley Conroy

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) -- Nation-wide reports say the country is officially out of the economic recession as of June 2009.

Mississippi's unemployment rate lingers around 10 percent, down from several months ago.

The State Tax Commission reports revenues for July were up $25 million, and up $7 million in August with an average increase of about 3.5 percent.

Though revenues have been up in fiscal year 2011, they report overall revenues are at a 6 percent decrease from where it was in 2008.

President of the Mississippi Economic Council Blake Wilson says these numbers indicate Mississippi is out of the recession as well, but has now entered recovery mode.

"Most of the folks we're talking to are saying sometime by the second quarter of next year we'll start to feel better," said President of the MS Economic Council, Blake Wilson.

Wilson says one sign of recovery is that Toyota decided to move forward with the plant in Blue Springs.

"The folks at Toyota, the leaders at pack car, they would not be bringing these plants up and online if they weren't predicting that the economy is coming back."

He also says a consistent increase in sales tax revenue with consumer spending will help keep the economy on stable ground.

For instance, he says car sales could play a major role in getting the economy from recovery to rebound

"When you see automotive sales go back up, because it means people are spending again."

Owner of Howard Wilson Chrysler in Jackson, Alan Wilson says their dealership felt the pinch for about two years while the economy dipped, but now things have started to turn around.

 "We're starting to see customers get back into the market. And you know this year has been dramatically better than 2008 and 2009," Wilson said.

Meantime, the tax commission also says August was the first time since the economy overturned that sales, individual, and corporate taxes were up.

"That's an early indication of perhaps things coming back, but that doesn't mean we don't need to continue to be prudent, because it's not going to be a rush back," Blake Wilson said.

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