MONROE, Louisiana — Retail sales in Ouachita Parish began 2015 the same way they closed out 2014 — up.
Though overall combined sales tax collections from January didn't match the dramatic gains of December, economist Bob Eisenstadt tells The News-Star (http://tnsne.ws/1Cp6c9h ) January's 2.8 percent increase over the same period in 2014 are encouraging.
Eisenstadt, director of the University of Louisiana at Monroe's Center for Business and Economic Research says he had feared December's 15 percent increase in collections may have pulled sales from the new year, but that wasn't the case.
The city of West Monroe enjoyed a double digit gain, 10.5 percent, in December, while the city of Monroe posted a 3.5 percent gain after a one-month record high in collections in December.
Information from: The News-Star, http://www.thenewsstar.com