The elephant in the room is how much longer this damn pandemic will last and who will be left standing when it finally ends. But that’s not the only aspect of our local economy with an uncertain fate.
You often hear that as bad as the economy is now, at least it’s not as bad as the 1980s. But in terms of impact on personal income, new data shows that it’s actually worse.
COLUMN: Cutting quality of life services will backfire, hurting Lafayette’s economy for years to come
In order to be economically competitive as a city, Lafayette needs to offer quality of life amenities. In the rush to cut budgets, Mayor-President Guillory is putting the city’s quality of life at risk, reducing its ability to retain and attract people, especially young families.
Lafayette’s economy can’t get healthy if its people aren’t healthy. The only way to slow the spread of this coronavirus is to get 80-90% of people to wear masks or to shut the everything back down again. Faced with those options, Lafayette needs to do everything in its power to get people to wear masks, not just to save lives but to save our economy.
Lafayette is facing a severe housing crisis, with thousands of people at risk of losing their homes. This crisis started before the pandemic, but the coronavirus and its impact on our economy has just added fuel to a fire that’s now threatening to rage through our community.
The gist: April sales numbers released by LEDA highlight the economic fallout from the state’s coronavirus lockdown. Total retail sales in the parish in March and April fell $112 million in 2020 when compared to the same months in 2019.
The gist: A new economic forecast projects that the Lafayette metro area will lead the state in jobs lost from the first quarter of this year to the second. Modeling by economist Gary Wagner of UL Lafayette’s B.I. Moody III College of Business Administration shows the area recovering less than 10% of those jobs over the next 18 months.
Projections by the St Louis Federal Reserve Bank rank the Lafayette metro area as having the 20th highest percentage of jobs at high risk of unemployment due to the coronavirus out of the 150 largest metro areas in the country.
Lafayette’s oil and gas industry is facing existential challenges that far outstrip the short-term subsidies being offered by the federal government’s coronavirus stimulus package.
Projections from local and national analysts warn that unemployment could hit 30% or more in the coming months due to the coronavirus. Lafayette is especially vulnerable because of the fall of oil and gas. Tens of thousands could be out of work by summertime.
The challenges facing Lafayette’s economy may seem overwhelming but you can help right the ship by spending money or making it, and that means more than just shopping local.
On Monday, the price of oil had its greatest one-day plunge ever, and coronavirus officially arrived in Louisiana. These developments pose threats the Lafayette economy is particularly vulnerable to.