Here's another good sign for the economy; the retail market in New Jersey is starting to grow.

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According to a survey by The Goldstein Group, the overall vacancy rate for retail in the northern and central part of the state fell to 7.6% the first six months of this year, down from 8% last year.

"We are seeing a continuing trend of retail space being leased up, at least 20 new retailers have moved into various corridors this year" said Chuck Lanyard, president of the Paramus-based Goldstein Group.

Lanyard says stores are leasing more space because they are getting good deals.

"Its a good time for stores to get in at a less expensive rent and open up new businesses."

The Goldstein report found that new construction and redevelopment projects are taking place in various areas throughout the state including Mahwah, Toms River, Sayreville, New Milford, Randolph, Cedar Knolls, Montvale, Fort Lee, Parsippany, and Teterboro.

"After awhile certain industries start to pick up...we are seeing a lot more furniture stores moving in these days" he said.

Lanyard expects the recovery of the retail market to continue the remainder of the year.

"This is a good sign that the economy is improving overall and also that consumer spending is up so I think we will see that trend continue."