Opinions vary on why Louisiana unemployment continues to rise

Louisiana’s unemployment rate has been rising despite a strong national economy. While some experts and officials say the trend does not accurately convey the condition of the state’s economy, other observers say it highlights fundamental, longstanding flaws.

“We’ve been a state that has been, for many, many years, not very diversified,” said James Richardson, an LSU economist who serves on the state’s Revenue Estimating Conference. “We really need to find those other industries.”

Louisiana’s unemployment rate hit 5 percent in August, rising for the fifth consecutive month while the national rate held steady at 3.9 percent. Louisiana’s rate was 4.9 percent in July…


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