Lafayette Chamber President Jason El Koubi Refutes IHS Projections
Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce President Jason El Koubi called into question the findings of a recent IHS Global Insight's projection that suggested Lafayette's economy was among the fastest shrinking in the nation.
In an opinion letter published by the Daily Advertiser, El Koubi called the projection "grossly misleading" and said it did not "accurately portray our regional economic trajectory."
El Koubi said a dip in gross metropolitan product (GMP) could be attributed almost entirely to "net downward pressures in the oil and gas sector that are unlikely to continue."
Lafayette and the surrounding area have seen gains in employment,--the most recent unemployment rate saw a drop from 4 percent to 3.3 percent--personal income, and retail sales over the same period highlighted in the projection.
"From 2011-2012 per capita personal income for Lafayette increased 5.3 percent, which was the 19th best of any MSA--metropolitan statistical area--in the United States over that period," El Koubi wrote.
On "Nathan & Bernie in the Morning," City-Parish President Joey Durel shrugged off the report, which was commissioned by the Council of Mayors, as a statistical twisting of the numbers.
El Koubi also questioned the reliability of the study, saying the IHS numbers have "consistently undershot or overshot the actual GMP...by between two to 15 percentage points, in some cases predicting losses when we actually experienced gains."
El Koubi expected to "considerably outperform IHS's expectations."