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San Diego economic recovery could remain stagnant for years, research co. says

SAN DIEGO – The pace of the economic recovery in San Diego continues to be slow, and could remain that way for a number of years, according to a forecast released recently.

The forecast comes on the heels of a ranking that placed three cities in the state of California – Riverside, Sacramento, and Los Angeles, on the nation’s “10 Toughest Cities to Find a Job” survey.

Kelly Cunningham, of the National University System Institute for Policy Research, said the San Diego region was showing signs of a mild economic recovery.

“Not exactly a boom coming out of the recession, San Diego’s economy is projected to grow 2.8 percent in 2010, the strongest growth of the past five years,” said Cunningham, an economist and senior fellow at the institute.

“While we would normally see a strong rebound emerging from such a deep setback, the projection for slower 2.2 percent growth in 2011 is a sign economic momentum continues to struggle,” the economist said.

Cunningham said the figures assume modest national and state economic growth.

The collapse of the housing market, financial turmoil and lower consumer spending dropped San Diego’s gross domestic product by 2.2 percent in 2009, the first local decline in economic activity in 16 years, according to Cunningham.

The good news is that San Diego is doing better than the rest of the state in the housing market, construction activity and job growth earlier this year, he said.

But showing the tepid nature of the recovery, the unemployment rate increased slightly in San Diego and Riverside counties from May to June of this year, according to figures released two weeks ago by the state Economic Development Department.

Cunningham said it was not likely the San Diego area would experience a “double-dip” recession.

10 toughest cities to find a job (2010)

1) St. Louis, Missouri

2) Detroit, Michigan

3) Miami, Florida

4) Las Vegas, Nevada

5) Riverside, Calif.

6) Los Angeles, Calif.

7) Sacramento, Calif.

8) Portland, Oregon

9) Memphis, Tennessee

10) Providence, Rhode Island

Source:, a leading job search engine


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