The Louisiana Economic Outlook estimates by 2022 Louisiana will have recovered only 90 percent of the jobs lost in the COVID Recession.

LSU Economist Dr. Loren Scott says by the end of this year Louisiana will have lost 105,000 jobs to the pandemic economic collapse.Dr. Scott says our recovery will be slow.

72,600 of those jobs will return by the end of 2021, but only 94,100 of the jobs will have returned by 2022, leaving 11,500 jobs lost across the state.

What’s driving much of this slow recovery? Scott says a lot of it boils down to their projection that oil prices will only rise to 49 dollars a barrel by 2022, doing real damage in oil-dependent regions. The Lake Charles, Baton Rouge, and Hammond regions are all projected to regain all of the jobs they lost by 2022, but the news is not so good for our area. Dr. Scott says Shreveport-Bossier is only expected to regain 70% of the jobs lost back. Our area has lost more than 10 thousand jobs this year. Our reliance on the gaming industry is one of the reasons we won't get all those jobs back.

We know Diamond Jacks Casino in Bossier City closed its doors this spring and those jobs are gone. Several of the other local casinos also laid off working during the Coronavirus pandemic. Many of those jobs might never come back. The local casino industry has already been struggling with competition from casinos in Oklahoma.