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Economist: Arizona can expect slight uptick in 2014

PHOENIX — Arizona is still a few years away from a full economic recovery, but the state should see a small uptick next year, an Arizona State University professor said.

Director of the JP Morgan Chase Economic Outlook Center at ASU’s W.P. Carey School of Business Lee McPheters said Arizona ranks seventh nationally in job growth, up from 49th in 2010. That growth is giving him a good feeling about next year.

“You look at finance, wholesale trade and construction.”

McPheters said personal income is expected to grow from 4 percent next year to 5.5 percent next year.

However, it’s not all good news. Arizona’s unemployment rate seems stuck at 8 percent.

“Arizona’s unemployment is the same right now as it was last year at this time and that shows we’re not making a lot of progress on that front,” McPheters said.

Arizona has had seven years of subpar growth and McPheters sees 2014 adding to that trend.

The state has regained 46 percent of the jobs lost in the recession but still has 170,000 jobs to replace.