Acadiana Business

Parish retail sales up 15 percent in October

by Leslie Turk

With retail sales up more in October than any other same month-over-month this year, the climb that started in 2010 is picking up steam.

More than $450 million of taxable retail sales in October - a 15.3 percent increase over the same month last year, which is the largest comparable month-over-month increase so far in 2011 - has bumped the 2011 year-to-date increase to 11.2 percent.

"The upward trend in retail sales that began in 2010 has continued in 2011, making this one of the best years for Lafayette Parish," says Gregg Gothreaux, president and CEO of the Lafayette Economic Development Authority. "These steadily increasing numbers show the resilience and diversity of the local economy and the confidence of local consumers."

LEDA's forecasting model indicates that 2011 total retail sales should reach nearly $5.34 billion - outpacing 2009 and 2010 totals and becoming what would rank as the second highest sales year on record. The record not likely to be broken this year was set in 2008, when $5.4 billion in goods and services were sold.

October hotel/motel receipts totaled $6.56 million, an increase of 2.5 percent over October 2010. Year-to-date hotel/motel receipts are outperforming 2010 by a healthy 11.6 percent.

Overall, food and services are the best performing categories in 2011 with double digit increases over 2010 numbers, 10.3 percent and 10.4 percent, respectively. Only general merchandise is down, a slight 1.5 percent, from 2010.

View historical retail sales information on LEDA's site here.