Louisiana recently received some welcome news on the business front. It was ranked 27 on the list of Chief Executive Magazine’s annual Best/Worst States for Business, a survey of more than 500 CEOs. In 2010, the state was ranked 40th. Following Wisconsin, it is the second most impressive gain since 2010.
Last December, the Louisiana Economic Development trumpeted Manpower Inc’s Employment Outlook Survey which hailed Louisiana’s statewide employment outlook for the first quarter of 2011 as the nation’s best. Twenty-one percent of Louisiana’s employers said they expected to hire more employees, compared to the U.S. average of 14 percent. Not bad for a state that not only had a recession to contend with, but also a devastating oil spill disaster.
It has been over a year since the BP oil spill, one of the most massive ecological disasters in U.S. history. A report commissioned by the Louisiana Office of Tourism, said that lost visitor spending is expected to total $295 million through 2013. The long-term impact on the state’s ecological health of the state has yet to be fully tallied. But the state’s seafood industry is rebounding since the U.S. government declared it was safe to eat locally caught seafood. According to the Los Angeles Times, Louisiana fisheries produce nearly one-third of the domestic seafood consumed in the country.
Louisiana is still struggling with unemployment (8.1 percent, 21st in the nation), but it is poised to continue its recovery following promising developments in 2010. DailyBeast.com ranked Louisiana third best out of 25 “Boom States” for high projected employment growth (17.1 percent) by 2018 and real employment growth over the past three years.
A report issued last January by the Louisiana Economic Development stated that since January 2008, Louisiana’s job performance has been better than any other Southern state, and that Louisiana has added jobs at a faster rate than the South and the country as a whole since the official end of the national recession in June 2009.
In the last year, Louisiana has scored highly in several national rankings. Among them, according to KALB News Channel 5 in Baton Rouge, are:
· Pollina Corporate Real Estate awarded Louisiana its first ever "Most Improved State" designation based on Louisiana's improved business climate ranking from 2008 to 2010. Louisiana ranked 20th on Pollina's 2010 business climate ranking, up from 27th in 2009 and 40th in 2008.
· Site Selection magazine ranked Louisiana's business climate the ninth best in the nation, which represented Louisiana's first appearance in the top 10.
· Southern Business & Development magazine named Louisiana "Co-state of the Year" for the second year in a row, citing Louisiana's success in attracting more significant business development wins per capita than any other Southern state.