CHICAGO - As unlikely as it may seem, Michigan can provide something of a model for states facing revenue and job losses stemming from a deteriorating U.S. automobile industry, Moody's Investors Service analysts said yesterday after releasing a report on the likely impacts from the fallout.

Despite having lost half its auto-related blue collar jobs since 2000, Michigan is doing "remarkably well," said Moody's analyst Edith Behr. Deep spending cuts and tax increases allowed the state to end its 2008 fiscal year in September with a small surplus. And though it now faces a $500 million shortfall, that is less than many neighboring states, and officials quickly implemented a round of cuts to bring that shortfall down.

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