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Canada suffers biggest job loss in nine years

10 February, 2018, 06:43 | Author: Melinda Barton
  • A worker in Ontario

The biggest loss of jobs in a single month in nine years highlighted January's unemployment figures from Statistics Canada, while Victoria's jobless rate gets closer to four per cent.

The province lost around 5,100 part-time positions but added 6,200 full-time positions.

In total, 560,100 people in the province were employed in January.

The drop nationally cools off Canada's strongest pace of growth since 2002 after creating more than 400,000 jobs in 2017.

Provincially, B.C. unemployment sat at 4.8 per cent in January, up slightly from 4.6, after shedding 5,100 jobs.

The province of Saskatchewan boasts the second best unemployment rate in the country according to Stats Canada.

It wasn't just Ontario that saw wage growth of more than 3 per cent. Quebec, Alberta and British Columbia recorded increases over that level, with the westernmost province's wages rising almost 4 per cent.

The decrease was driven by the loss of 137,000 part-time positions, including more than 59,000 in Ontario.

The unemployment rate in Medicine Hat has once again gone up.

Ontario recorded the biggest decline last month, down 51,000 -all part-time.

However, several experts made sure to note that before trying to draw conclusions from the January report, one should consider the well-known month-to-month volatility in the jobs figures.

Windsor's job market saw improvements in January from a year ago on two fronts, the unemployment rate and the labour participation rate.

Canada's economy has still seen employment increase by 288,700 jobs over the past 12 months - 146,000 of which came in November and December. It was the biggest one-month collapse in part-time work since the agency started gathering the data in 1976. It's the highest year-over-year increase since July 2015 when it rose 3.32 per cent. While the unemployment rate in December was 8.6 per cent, month-over-month comparisons are hard to make as data is unadjusted for seasonal differences that can influence each month. The Canadian dollar traded lower, dipping by 0.07 of a cent at 79.23 cents U.S. Economists are hoping the news will reduce pressure on the Bank of Canada to raise interest rates.

"This is a mixed bag for the Bank of Canada because we did see a significant rise in wage inflation ... which might counter the disappointment on the headline jobs count", Shenfeld said.



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