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CEIR: Trade show industry breaks years-long negative growth streak

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Dallas—The trade show and exhibitions industry has begun to show positive growth for the first time in almost three years, according to a new study from the Center for Exhibition Industry Research.

According to the CEIR Index, conference and trade show attendance increased 6.6% in the third quarter compared with the same quarter a year ago. Both net square feet of exhibit space sold and number of exhibiting companies showed 5.2% growth over the same period.

The figures break a string of nine consecutive quarters of negative growth, according to CEIR. The results are particularly noteworthy because third quarters are traditionally the weakest of the year.

“The test will be to see if this positive trend continues into the fourth quarter of 2010 and then the all-important first quarter of 2011,” said Doug Ducate, CEIR president-CEO, in a statement.

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