Most indicators plateau over the week

Baton Rouge, La. (June 16, 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.

Over-the-week data show relatively little change across indicators, which may point to a plateauing of recovery on a regional level. Next week’s unemployment data, which will represent the first full week of Phase Two, will be illustrative in how expanded openings impacted small business employment.

“This week’s data is a stark reminder that the reopening of the economy is dependent on the willingness of residents to engage in commerce much more than any government edict,” said Andrew Fitzgerald, senior director of business intelligence for BRAC. “Phase Two of reopening saw slightly higher employment and spending, but also higher positive COVID test results. That fact, combined with the tropical storm, seems to have led to a plateauing of the economic recovery on a regional level – as seen by the lack of mobility of residents.”

Key takeaways from this week’s dashboard include:

  • Small business employment continues to tick upward in the region, but at a relatively slow pace;
  • Unemployment claims have stopped falling and have plateaued at around 57,000 for the region;
  • Like employment, hotel occupancy data is flat, despite early June being a high-travel time in 2019;
  • CATS ridership and mobility data generally show less movement than the week before, potentially due to concerns about the tropical storm.

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.

Data related to vehicle fuel sales was not available at the time of publication. That information will be added when possible.

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.

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