BRAC is producing a weekly economic indicator dashboard as part of our business recovery priorities. The dashboard examines and assesses the impact of COVID-19 on the regional economy, taking into account a number of data points to illustrate the economy’s current state, and to keep businesses informed until it begins to steady and as it rebounds. Past dashboards are archived on brac.org/recovery.
Key takeaways from this week’s dashboard include:
- Commercial/Industrial fuel sales in the Capital Region, which had been steady over-the-year, dropped by 38% compared to 2019 in a comparable week, while retail sales continue to lag 2019 numbers by nearly 30%;
- Hotel revenues for the last week were only 1/3 of what they were in 2019 while occupancy was about 50% lower than last year;
- CATS ridership is significantly down, and continues to be lower as the pandemic continues. For the week ending April 25, ridership is down 56% over the year;
- While March saw traffic counts on various Capital Region highways static or up, April saw a deep decline, including 37% fewer drivers on I-110 than in March;
- There was an over-the-week drop in initial unemployment claims of 27% in the Baton Rouge metro area, but the weekly claims were still about 40 times greater than a normal pre-pandemic week.