SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – The future of Louisiana’s economy is looking bright despite national projections that say a recession could be on the horizon according to the state’s annual economic forecast.
Dr. Loren C. Scott released his annual forecast for 2024 and 2025 on Friday afternoon.
Shreveport-Bossier received a positive projection for the next two years due to several national companies opening facilities in the area.
“We are projecting a very healthy two years ahead for the Shreveport-Bossier MSA, with the job count up 3,000 jobs (+1.7%) in 2024 and 3,900 jobs (+2.2%) in 2025. Opening of the Amazon Fulfillment Center and SLB at the old GM plant will generate 1,600 new jobs here, and $250 million is scheduled for a new, on-land casino to replace the closed Diamond Jacks Casino. A major new $1 billion capital project at the Port of Caddo-Bossier is looking good, as is the future for the Haynesville Shale,” the report reads.
The report also forecasts continued recovery in the state’s 29 rural parishes thanks to the wood industry.
“Syrah Resource’s half-billion-dollar phase 3, and potentially a $2.8 billion Louisiana Green plant start construction. At least $320 million in solar farms are scheduled for these parishes. We are forecasting 1,200 jobs a year over 2024-25, a 0.6% annual growth rate,” is also highlighted in the report.
The report projects that across all of Louisiana’s nine MSAs (metropolitan statistical areas) 38,700 new jobs will be added in 2024 and 42,200 jobs in 2025.
Reacting to Dr. Scott’s projections Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards praised the state’s historically low unemployment rate and growth in manufacturing.
“The good economic news for Louisiana just keeps on coming with Dr. Loren Scott’s prediction that Louisiana will add more than 80,000 jobs in the next two years,” said Governor John Bel Edwards. “We have the lowest unemployment rate in state history, manufacturing jobs are at a seven-year high, and our climate action plan has positioned us to lead the global energy transition and attract massive investments in green energy and carbon reduction technology. I have never been more optimistic about the future of our state and I want to thank all Louisianans, across political parties and economic sectors, who have helped us grow and diversify our economy.”
If these forecasts are near the mark, then in 2024, Louisiana will break through that 2,000,000 annual employment level for the first time in its history, according to Scott’s projections.
While the forecast is mostly optimistic Scott’s report warns that his team does agree that a “shallow recession” at the national level is in the immediate future.