3 Cities to Watch
Source: U.S. Department of Labor
Neil Pierson is editor of Scotsman Guide Commercial Edition.
Reach him at (800) 297-6061 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Louisiana’s unemployment rate stood at 4. 7 percent as of this past
June, the 11th straight month the state had posted a rate below 5 percent. The Louisiana Workforce Commission projects the state will add
146,000 jobs between 2015 and 2024, equating to employment growth
of 7 percent.
Tariffs imposed earlier this year by the U.S. and China may heavily impact
both imports and exports from the Pelican State. Louisiana has the
largest trade surplus with China of any state, according to a Bloomberg
report, and is a worldwide gateway for soybean distribution. The proposed construction in Louisiana of a $1.12 billion chemical-manufacturing
plant by a Chinese company also may be impacted by a trade war.
The Pelican State is the nation’s second-largest seafood supplier, the
Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board reports. One out of
70 jobs in the state are related to the seafood industry, which generates
$2.4 billion annually for the state. Shrimp, oyster, crab, crawfish and even
alligator fishing contribute greatly to Louisiana’s economy.
The state has about 350 licensed seafood processors and distributors, according to the Louisiana Department of Health.
Louisiana is home to dozens of commercial seafood companies, including Gulf Crown Seafood Co., Louisiana Seafood Exchange, Tommy’s Seafood Inc., Harlon’s LA Fish & Seafood, and Craig Borges’ New Orleans
The state capital and home to 225,000 people, Baton Rouge thrives on
chemical and energy production, structural-material manufacturing,
software development and technical research, according to the Baton
Rouge Area Chamber. The chamber also reports that the cost of doing
business in the city is 7 percent lower than the national average, partially due to low electric and natural gas prices. There are more than
31,000 students who attend Louisiana State University’s main campus
in the city. The median home price of $164,200 as of this past May represented a 10. 4 percent year-over-year increase, according to Zillow.
As the hub of southwestern Louisiana, Lake Charles has 77,000 residents
and its five-county metro-area population is expected to reach 208,000
by 2020. In 2016, the median home price was $148,000, the cost of
living was 5 percent below the national average and year-over-year
job growth was 5.1 percent, according to Forbes. As of February 2017,
southwestern Louisiana was home to 23 employers with at least
500 employees, including Lake Charles Memorial Health System, Citgo,
Phillips 66 and McNeese State University.
Located about halfway between Lake Charles and Baton Rouge, Lafayette grew by 11,250 residents, or 9 percent, from 2009 to 2015, census
data shows. A downturn in oil prices in 2015 and 2016, however, may
impact long-term employment figures. Lafayette touts its historical sites,
food, music, sports and shopping as major attractions. The city’s largest
employers include Lafayette General Health, jewelry manufacturer
Stuller Inc., and oil-and-gas management companies Island Operating Co.
and Baker Hughes.
Sources: Baton Rouge Area Chamber, Cushman & Wakefield, Experience New Orleans,
Forbes, Lafayette Economic Development Authority, Louisiana Department of Health,
Louisiana Economic Development, Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, Louisiana
Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board, Louisiana Travel Promotion Association, New
Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp., Site Selection Magazine, SWLA Economic Development
Alliance, The Houma Courier, The New Orleans Advocate, The Times-Picayune, U. S. Census
Bureau, U. S. Department of Commerce, U. S. Department of Labor, U.S. News & World