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(AJC) — Unemployment may rise and home sales may fall, but Atlanta’s economy is poised for “quasi-growth” the next two years, the Economic Forecasting Center at Georgia State University predicted Wednesday.

Fears of a double-dip recession and deflation are unfounded “provided we don’t have a steep drop in home values,” said center director Rajeev Dhawan.

“What happens to home prices over the next few months will be critical to the confidence of consumers,” Dhawan said. “It will affect their spending decisions, especially for big-ticket items. This, in turn, will send a signal to CEOs about whether or not to ramp up their investment and hiring plans.”

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