Wednesday September 21, 2011

 Dr. Loren Scott

Dwight Andrus Insurance and MidSouth Bank return as presenting sponsors

Although residential home starts in Lafayette Parish are down year-to-date when compared to 2010, sales tax collections are up by almost 11 percent and local real estate analysts see some hopeful signs in sales of existing homes in 2011, especially in recent months. The price of oil is up but rig counts and permits were down through the most recent reporting cycle. Natural gas prices are low and likely to stay that way because of over-supply, but that bodes well for the case being made for the commodity as a relatively clean bridge fuel to the future. Against a continuing backdrop of troubling national economic news and some confusing signs here at home, Acadiana’s economy remains stable, but what of the year ahead?

As business decision-makers enter that all-important fourth quarter planning cycle, ABiz magazine presents the 2011 Entrée to Business Luncheon with Dr. Loren Scott to help put these competing trends in perspective. Widely considered to be the top resource in the state on economic matters, Scott built his career at LSU, where he is now professor emeritus of economics. Known for interpreting complex data into useful, accessible numbers, he is co-developer of the Louisiana econometric model, a model used for providing annual forecasts of the Louisiana economy. Each year in early October, he publishes the much-anticipated Louisiana Economic Outlook, and he says energy remains the driver in Acadiana. “The big question for the Lafayette MSA: How fast will the Gulf of Mexico recover? Will the log jam of permits finally be opened over the next two years? Will the continued development of the Haynesville Shale and the development of the new Tuscaloosa Marine Shale pump up the region’s service industries to the exploration companies?” he asks. “The new 150-person Halliburton facility is a very hopeful positive sign.”

Presented exclusively in Acadiana at the annual ABiz Entrée to Business Luncheon, Scott’s LEO model analysis and projections provide local business leaders with valuable information as they adopt budgets and strategies for the upcoming year. The luncheon is sponsored by MidSouth Bank and Dwight Andrus Insurance, with support from the Acadiana Economic Development Council, and is slated for Friday, Oct. 7, at noon at the Cajundome Convention Center. Each luncheon attendee will receive a CD of Scott’s full LEO report as well as his Acadiana-specific PowerPoint presentation, produced by Vidox Motion Imagery.

This event is a sell-out each year, and ticket sales are brisk. Individual tickets are $50 per person or $450 for a reserved table of eight. For information or to order tickets, contact Robin Hebert via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phone: (337) 769-8603.

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