Numbers shed good economic news for southwest Louisiana - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Numbers shed good economic news for southwest Louisiana

CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) -

While places across the country seem to still be struggling economically, Calcasieu Parish isn't one of those areas. In fact the economy here is flourishing.

Good news for both southwest Louisiana businesses and consumers in today's struggling nation: the economy in our area is on an upward climb. In fact experts say it's actually going to get better.

"I think that we're looking at the beginning of what could be a very significant economic expansion, boom if you want to use that word," said Dr. Michael Kurth, professor of Economics at McNeese State University. 

A boom, something that seems hard to believe after the recent tough times in America. But even during those times, the economy in southwest Louisiana didn't collapse.

"We really never have felt the effects of the so called national recession," said Calcasieu Parish Sales Tax Director Rufus Fruge. "We've been, I can't say it any other way, but we've been blessed."

"We are so blessed in the Lake Charles area to have our economy," said car dealership owner Billy Navarre. 

The recent numbers show an increase in food sales, that's grocery stores and restaurants. Fruge says that's because no matter what, people must eat. Also up:manufacturing. That includes the chemical plants.

"This is the cheapest place in the world right now to produce chemicals and petrochemicals," said Dr. Kurth. 

In fact that category sky rocketed recently. Experts say because the plants are now spending more money than before. They also say manufacturing and the entire economy will continue to improve.

"I just think that we haven't reached our pinnacle yet," said Fruge.

"What's going to happen is as this boom unfolds, if that in fact is the case, is that the green line is going to continue to go up and as that green line goes up, it's going to pull the other sectors up with it," said Dr. Kurth.  

Dr. Kurth says that already seems to  be happening. He says evidence lies in the automobile industry. Car sales are up, and the dealerships agree.

"Our area, we've been so blessed," said Navarre. "We went through a down time with the banking crisis, but our business never got like it was in Florida and Phoenix, but here, last month, for example, our business was just unbelievable."

People across the state don't seem to be convinced that Louisiana is doing well economically. But Fruge says it's true, especially locally.

"The governor keeps saying we've got a great economy and so forth and people are saying I don't see it," said Fruge. "Here in Calcasieu Parish, we're seeing it."    

The only numbers that are slightly down deal with building construction.

Copyright KPLC 2012. All rights reserved.
  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Man facing theft charges after posing as taxi driver

    Man facing theft charges after posing as taxi driver

    Friday, July 20 2018 11:12 PM EDT2018-07-21 03:12:20 GMT
    "Make sure that whether you use a cab or whether you use a shared ride program that it's legitimate. Not just someone standing saying 'Hey I'll give you a ride," McGee said."Make sure that whether you use a cab or whether you use a shared ride program that it's legitimate. Not just someone standing saying 'Hey I'll give you a ride," McGee said.
    "Make sure that whether you use a cab or whether you use a shared ride program that it's legitimate. Not just someone standing saying 'Hey I'll give you a ride," McGee said."Make sure that whether you use a cab or whether you use a shared ride program that it's legitimate. Not just someone standing saying 'Hey I'll give you a ride," McGee said.

    It was around 4:30 in the morning when the Calcasieu Parish sheriff's office got a call to a gas station on Gertsner Memorial Boulevard. "A couple got into a vehicle that they thought was either a taxi, or a shared ride program and it was not," James McGee, Enforcement Commander for the Calcasieu Parish sheriff's office, said.  When the couple pulled off to use the restroom, they came back out to find the taxi driver had left with their personal belongings and cell ph...

    More >>

    It was around 4:30 in the morning when the Calcasieu Parish sheriff's office got a call to a gas station on Gertsner Memorial Boulevard. "A couple got into a vehicle that they thought was either a taxi, or a shared ride program and it was not," James McGee, Enforcement Commander for the Calcasieu Parish sheriff's office, said.  When the couple pulled off to use the restroom, they came back out to find the taxi driver had left with their personal belongings and cell ph...

    More >>
  • BREAKING

    Twelve to take test to be next Lake Charles Chief of Police

    Twelve to take test to be next Lake Charles Chief of Police

    Friday, July 20 2018 9:26 PM EDT2018-07-21 01:26:36 GMT
    The City of Lake Charles is currently in the hiring process to replace retiring Chief of Police Don Dixon. Dixon is retiring in January 2019. (Source: Spark)The City of Lake Charles is currently in the hiring process to replace retiring Chief of Police Don Dixon. Dixon is retiring in January 2019. (Source: Spark)

    Twelve people have applied to take the Civil Service test to be the next Chief of Police for the Lake Charles Police Department. Current Chief of Police Don Dixon has announced that he intends to retire Jan. 15, 2019. The deadline to apply to take the test was Wednesday, July 18. The dozen people who applied are made up of several former and current LCPD members and law enforcement from agencies in Louisiana and Texas. KPLC's Theresa Schmidt will be interviewing Mayor Ni...

    More >>

    Twelve people have applied to take the Civil Service test to be the next Chief of Police for the Lake Charles Police Department. Current Chief of Police Don Dixon has announced that he intends to retire Jan. 15, 2019. The deadline to apply to take the test was Wednesday, July 18. The dozen people who applied are made up of several former and current LCPD members and law enforcement from agencies in Louisiana and Texas. KPLC's Theresa Schmidt will be interviewing Mayor Ni...

    More >>
  • Westlake marching band beats the heat

    Westlake marching band beats the heat

    Friday, July 20 2018 9:16 PM EDT2018-07-21 01:16:51 GMT

    Westlake High School's marching band doesn't have camp until next week, but freshmen joining the band were out practicing Friday. But they weren't going through formations on the football field. They were in the parking lot.

    More >>

    Westlake High School's marching band doesn't have camp until next week, but freshmen joining the band were out practicing Friday. But they weren't going through formations on the football field. They were in the parking lot.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly