Unemployment down for fifth straight week; Laura expected to bump fuel sales and hotel occupancy
Baton Rouge, La. (September 2, 2020) – The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) today released its COVID-19 economic indicator dashboard that examines and assesses the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the regional economy. The dashboard is available online at brac.org/recovery.
“Hurricane Laura has caused disruption to the entire state, although there is a silver lining for the Capital Region’s economy,” said Andrew Fitzgerald, senior director of business intelligence for BRAC. “Because Baton Rouge was largely outside of Laura’s path, hotel occupancy and consumer spending data will likely spike as the metro area hosted a number of evacuees. Fuel data, while unavailable for this week’s dashboard because of the storm, is likely to increase as well.”
Key findings from this week’s dashboard include:
- Consumer spending stayed strong in Livingston and Ascension, but dipped in East Baton Rouge – the parish with the most unemployed individuals in the region, in the second week without enhanced unemployment benefits;
- Mobility was down through the week, specifically to the workplace, likely due to storm closures;
- Weekly unemployment claims dipped slightly, marking the fifth straight week of lower claims;
- Hotel occupancy was just short of the same week in 2019, and is expected to be near capacity next week due to the high number of evacuees traveling to the region.
The dashboard looks at a number of data points to illustrate the economy’s current state. With data from a number of regional stakeholders, the dashboard is the most real-time analysis of the Baton Rouge metro economy available.
To download this week’s indicator dashboard directly, click here.
BRAC is regularly updating brac.org/recovery with business resources and guidance related to COVID-19.
About the Baton Rouge Area Chamber
The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) leads economic development in the nine-parish Baton Rouge Area, working to grow jobs and wealth and to improve the business climate and competitiveness in the region. Today, BRAC investors include more than 1,400 small businesses, mid-sized firms, large industry and entrepreneurial startups, as well as individuals and organizations that support business and economic development. In this capacity, BRAC serves as the voice of the business community, providing knowledge, access, services and advocacy. More information is available at brac.org.