- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 4, 2014

URBANA, Ill. (AP) - Illinois’ economic growth slowed in February and a University of Illinois economist says you can probably blame it on the weather.

The university said Monday that its monthly Flash Index dropped in February to 106.8 from 107.2 a month earlier. A reading above 100 indicates the economy is growing while anything below 100 indicates contraction.

Economist Fred Giertz (GERTZ) said harsh winter weather last month may have slowed the state’s economy. If so, he said Illinois may play catch-up in March.

But Giertz said that even with February’s slowdown the state’s economy continues to grow at a modest, steady pace. He said that’s been the case for two years now.

The Flash Index tracks corporate earnings, consumer spending and personal income to measure the performance of the state’s economy.

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