We’re coming up on completing the first third of 2008, and, from my point of view as a student of economic news, it’s been a really mixed bag, with good and bad news both coming at us fast and furious. As a bankruptcy attorney in Indiana, I like to stay on top of happenings in our state that are likely to affect not only myself and my family, but my bankruptcy clients around Indiana. Along with everyone else, I’m sad when I read about big layoffs, knowing that job displacement is one of the big three causes of bankruptcy. On the other hand, I’m excited to read about about new plants and new companies coming into the state, because I know those job opportunities will help my clients rebuild their financial lives after bankruptcy.

In my blogs earlier this year, I wrote about Pfizer eliminating 660 jobs south of Terre Haute, but then I noted that home technology company Defender Direct is planning to hire 300 people in Indianapolis, and Boral Bricks and CertainTeed are set to open facilities near Terre Haute this spring.

Just in the last week or two there has been lots of news – both good and bad. On the negative side, J.P. Morgan is cutting 100 jobs due to the mortgage situation. Plants are closing in East Chicago and Logansport, affecting more than 150 employees, with the biggest bad news of all being ATA’s bankruptcy, which has resulted in nearly 600 jobs being lost.

But, as I said, not all the news is bad. General Motors announced reaching an agreement with the union in Ft. Wayne, and it plans to hired 276 new workers. Indalex, Inc. just held a job fair in Connersville to hire 30 new full time people. And one really big good-news story comes from Cummins, where the hiring of 500 professional-level workers will be in progress the next two years. Meanwhile, Rolls Royce announced a deal with the Canadian Air Force to supply engines for 17 new aircraft, which should shore up job security for many in Indianapolis. Meanwhile, Amazon is opening a giant warehouse in Whitestown, and will employ 1200 full time and 1700 seasonal workers, with the first 400 hires starting next month.

So… it may not be all good tidings, but one thing’s for sure – things are happening in Indiana!