Monday, 18 February, 2019

Country sheds 7.5K jobs, local employment relatively unchanged

Nellie Chapman | 10 June, 2018, 17:59

Nationally, Statistics Canada says the unemployment rate stood unchanged at 5.8 per cent in May, although the country lost about 7,500 jobs.

"The May employment report was a bit of stinker, but stepping back shows a labour market that is pretty tight, with some upward wage pressure", Bank of Montreal senior economist Robert Kavcic wrote in a brief note.

The rate of employment in the region dropped after four straight months of increases, but only by 0.1 percent to 68.6 percent.

Average hourly wages rose 3.9 per cent from a year earlier, matching a pace last seen in July 2012. In B.C., that title goes to Kelowna, with a jobless rate of 5%. Economists interpreted the change as a hawkish signal suggesting that the next interest rate hike may be sooner rather than later. British Columbia has the lowest unemployment rate in the nation, while Quebec, at 5.3 per cent, and Ontario, at 5.7 per cent, had the second- and third-best unemployment rates.

The loss of jobs came as the health care and social assistance sector lost 24,000 jobs, while the manufacturing sector lost 18,000. Employment in construction fell by 13,000.

The overall reduction in the number of jobs in Canada is attributable to the following: the number of those that involve the employment of full-time work decreased by 31 000, and is only partly compensated by the emergence of 23 600 new places part-time.

The unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. jumped 1.6 percent in the last month to reach 7.9 percent in May.

On the contrary, the service-sector continued to add jobs, with notable gains in accommodation and food services, and professional services.

On a year-over-year basis, overall employment was up by 238,000 jobs or 1.3 per cent, due to gains in full-time work.