Published on : Friday, March 20, 2020
Among the 106 largest metro areas of the country, New Orleans, a tourism-dependent economy has the third-highest percentage of jobs in tourism, majorly at risk from the recession that is all set to create wave across the U.S., as per a new study.
The monetary fallout from the novel coronavirus is particularly expected to cause huge job losses in the hospitality as well as leisure sectors that control in New Orleans, the Brookings Institution reported on Wednesday.
Stephen Perry, the chief promoter of New Orleans’ tourism industry, agreed with the depressing analysis and forecasted huge job losses.
“We’re expecting tens of thousands of hospitality industry layoffs within the next week,” said Perry, who is president and chief executive officer of New Orleans & Co., a private entity funded by the hospitality industry and tourism taxes. “We never dreamed of having the elements of 9/11, [Hurricane] Katrina and the 2008/09 market crash combined in one. It’s an extremely perilous time for all of our small businesses and hospitality workers.”
The Brookings study has investigated that metro New Orleans; almost 23.3% of the jobs are in the four sectors with huge risk. Those other sectors are oil, gas and mining; transportation; temporary workers and independent contractors; and hospitality and leisure.
According to Brookings, the 91,700 leisure and hospitality jobs represent three-fourths of New Orleans’ employment in those four sectors.
“This recession that we’re probably in is the first recession in modern history driven by the service sector,” said Rob Maxim, a co-author of the study. “This one is basically being caused by social distancing. The virus has made so many people cancel trips, stop going to bars on Friday nights and cancel hotel reservations. It’s affecting strong tourism areas. Tourists going to the French Quarter can’t do that remotely.”