LSUA December Economic Dashboard: Cenla’s economy remaining strong

Published: Dec. 14, 2020 at 5:03 PM CST
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Thanks to data released every month in the LSUA Economic Dashboard, we’ve been able to see how our local economy is doing in the midst of the pandemic. By all indications, it looks like Cenla’s economy is doing well.

Looking at the December dashboard, October data shows that Alexandria has an average unemployment rate of 7.9 percent compared to 9.3 percent statewide.

LSUA’s College of Business Dean, Dr. Randall Dupont, says he expects to see positive results when it comes to November’s unemployment data as well.

During the past year, we’re told Alexandria has seen some of the lowest unemployment rates among all of the metro areas, and we’ve almost equaled where we were in consumer spending in sales tax revenue for all of last year. We’re told this can be chalked up to stimulus money and unemployment benefits.

Although 2020 will be a hard year to top, Dr. Dupont tells us 2021 will be positive as well, once people start to get vaccinated for COVID-19.

“I think the vaccines and people getting the vaccines are going to be a boost for the local economy. You’re going to see small businesses and restaurants filled with people again and we’re looking forward to that. So, I think it’s going to be very positive, and it’s really going to help us next year return to normal.”

Dr. Randall Dupont, College of Business Dean

As far as travel, the hotel occupancy is running only six percent behind what it was at last year, and Alexandria’s International Airport is doing extremely well.

The next dashboard will be released in January. LSUA is also working on a small business development center that’s expected to open at the start of the new year.

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