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Shreveport Chamber of Commerce President Tim Magner talks about how the pandemic affected business in 2020 and prospects for the coming year.

"I think what we've seen is an uneven experience," Magner says, looking back at 2020, "I think that when you look at some of the more challenging retail businesses - restaurants, the smaller mom-and-pop shops - have struggled. I think you're starting to se a bit of a turn around now with the additional stimulus funds that were just provided...will help carry us into the new year.

"The vaccine will definitely have a positive impact. There are certain sectors of the economy that have done well and bounced back and others that have not. I think there will be some shaking out through the first quarter and into the first half of the coming year and I would suspect that by mid-year we would have a pretty good sense of where things are."

Magner then describes the attitude of Shreveport businesses looking at their prospects for 2021 as cautiously optimistic. "The stimulus dollars will definitely help. The big question for us is whether people will return to the local shop or whether they will continue to buy online. That's going to be the big question for communities like ours."

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