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Unemployment Rate

NORTHEAST BC UNEMPLOYMENT RATES

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
2008 -- -- -- 4.3 5.0 5.9 6.2 6.3 5.8 5.0 4.5 3.6
2009 4.6 4.6 6.5 6.5 8.4 7.7 7.9 8.3 7.9 7.2 5.5 5.4
2010 4.9 4.4 4.6 5.3 6.9 7.5 7.2 6.7 7.6 7.6 6.4 7.1
2011 9.0 9.1 8.1 5.4 5.1 4.0 4.4 4.2 4.3 4.3 -- --
2012 -- 3.7 3.6 4.2 3.9 4.8 4.3 4.8 4.4 3.8 -- --
2013 -- 4.1 4.6 5.2 6.1 4.9 4.5 4.4 4.9 4.9 3.6 4.7
2014 6.6 7.4 8.2 8.6 8.0 5.9 4.7 4.1 4.0 -- -- --
2015 -- -- 4.2 4.7 5.9 6.1 6.4 5.5 5.5 6.2 7.0 7.6
2016 8.5 9.2 9.7 9.4 9.6 9.2 8.8 8.6 9.4 9.7 10.0 10.5
2017 10.5 8.7                    

In February 2017, the unemployment rate in BC is 5.7% and 8.6% in Alberta.

-- : suppressed to meet the confidentiality requirements of the Statistics Act


Labour Force

BC Highlights

The unemployment rate in British Columbia was 5.1% in February, down from 5.6% in January. The gain in employment relative to the previous month (+19,400) was much greater than the increase in the size of the labour force (+6,600). The unemployment rate was also lower when compared to February 2016, when it was 6.5%. Job growth (+84,900) was greater than the growth in the labour force (+50,400) over the course of the past twelve months.

Compared to January, there were 33,400 more full-time jobs, while part-time jobs fell by 13,900.

In February, employment in both the public sector (+13,800) and the private sector (+6,400) increased relative to the month before, while the number of self-employed individuals dropped slightly (-800) during the same time period.

Provincial comparisons

 At 5.1%, British Columbia’s unemployment rate remained the lowest in Canada during the month of February. Manitoba (5.8%) and Saskatchewan (6.0%) recorded the second and third lowest unemployment rates. At 8.3%, Alberta’s unemployment rate was seventh lowest among the provinces.

National Highlights

 During the month of February, employment in Canada was almost unchanged (+15,300 or +0.1%), while the labour force shrank (-23,000 or -0.1%). As a result, the national unemployment rate dropped 0.2 percentage points to 6.6%.

Gender

In February, employment in British Columbia for men (aged 25 years and over) grew by 11,300 jobs, while the labour force increased by 9,000. As a result, the unemployment rate was 4.6%, down 0.2 percentage points from the previous month.

For women (aged 25 years and over), employment increased by 11,300 jobs. The labour force grew at a slower pace (+6,100), pushing the unemployment rate down by 0.5 percentage points to 4.3%.

Compared to February 2016, the unemployment rate for men was down by 1.5 percentage points to 4.6%, and for women it was down by 0.6 percentage points to 4.3%. Jobs for men increased by 26,700 (+2.5%) compared to a year ago, and for women employment climbed by 46,900 (+4.9%).

Youths Aged 15 to 24 Years

The unemployment rate for youth aged 15 to 24 years fell by 1.2 percentage points to 8.7% in February. Employment decreased by 3,300 jobs while the labour force diminished by 8,500 people. Compared to February 2016, the unemployment rate for youth decreased by 3.5 percentage points to 8.7%.

BC Stats Infoline

Employment Insurance

January 2017

In January, 567,900 people received Employment Insurance (EI) benefits, little changed from the previous month (-1,900 or -0.3%).

Provincially, Alberta recorded the largest decrease in beneficiaries in January (-6.2%). Smaller declines occurred in Saskatchewan (-1.9%) and Newfoundland and Labrador (-1.1%). Conversely, the number of beneficiaries increased in Quebec (+2.8%), Manitoba (+1.5%) and Prince Edward Island (+1.1%). It was little changed in the remaining provinces.

In the 12 months to January, the number of EI beneficiaries in Canada was up by 20,300 or 3.7%, largely as a result of increases in Alberta.

In general, changes in the number of EI beneficiaries reflect various situations, including people becoming beneficiaries, people going back to work and people no longer receiving regular benefits.

Part of the year-over-year increase in January may be related to changes in EI policy, including those that came into effect in July 2016. More information on the 2016 EI changes is available on Employment and Social Development Canada's website.

Provincial and sub-provincial overview

In Alberta, 91,700 people received EI benefits in January -- a decrease of 6,100 or 6.2% from December. This is the first notable decrease that has occurred in the province since September 2014, excluding August 2016, when there was a sizable offsetting decrease in the number of beneficiaries following the implementation of EI policy changes in July. The January 2017 decline was also the largest monthly (percentage) decrease in Alberta since April 2012.

Decreases in the number of beneficiaries occurred throughout Alberta, including the census metropolitan areas (CMAs) of Edmonton (-5.8%) and Calgary (-4.6%).

Beginning in July 2016, regular EI benefits were extended for anywhere from 5 to 25 weeks in 15 regions experiencing significant increases in the rate of unemployment, including all areas of Alberta as well as most areas of Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador. The January decrease in the number of beneficiaries in these provinces may reflect an increase in the number of people who have exhausted their extended benefits. In Alberta, the January decrease in the number of beneficiaries could also reflect improvements in the local labour market, coinciding with the recent rise in global oil prices, as well as remediation and reconstruction activity in Fort McMurray following the May 2016 wildfires.

On a year-over-year basis, the number of beneficiaries in Alberta rose by 41.2%.

In Saskatchewan, 19,300 people received benefits in January, 370 or 1.9% fewer than in December. Decreases were observed in all areas of the province, with the exception of Regina, where the number of beneficiaries increased by 3.8%. In the 12 months to January, the number of beneficiaries in Saskatchewan grew by 23.1%.

The number of beneficiaries in Newfoundland and Labrador decreased in January, down 430 or 1.1% to 37,400. The CMA of St. John's was the only area where the number of beneficiaries was little changed from December. Declines were observed in all other areas of the province. On a year-over-year basis, the number of beneficiaries in Newfoundland and Labrador increased by 6.7%.

After five months of decreases, the number of people receiving benefits in Quebec increased in January, up 3,800 or 2.8% from December to 136,900. While increases were observed throughout the province, the largest percentage increase occurred in the CMA of Sherbrooke (+8.2%). The increase in the number of EI beneficiaries in Quebec was most notable in occupations related to manufacturing and utilities, as well as in trades, transport and equipment operators.

In the 12 months to January, the number of beneficiaries in Quebec decreased by 6.2%.

The number of beneficiaries in Manitoba rose in January, up 230 or 1.5% from December to 16,100. Most of this increase occurred in the CMA of Winnipeg (+2.6%). On a year-over-year basis, the number of beneficiaries in the province increased by 2.9%.

The number of beneficiaries in Prince Edward Island grew by 90 or 1.1% in January to 7,900. This increase was evenly distributed across the province. In the 12 months to January, the number of beneficiaries in the province increased by 2.5%.

The number of EI beneficiaries in the other provinces was little changed in January. However, this was not the case for certain areas in New Brunswick, Ontario and British Columbia. The number of beneficiaries rose by 4.9% in Saint John, New Brunswick. In Ontario, Greater Sudbury (-6.6%), Peterborough (-2.3%) and Windsor (-2.2%) recorded decreases in the number of beneficiaries, while most of the remaining CMAs posted increases, including Thunder Bay (+3.6%), Guelph (+3.4%) and London (+2.9%). In British Columbia, there were fewer beneficiaries in Kelowna (-4.2%) and Victoria (-3.7%), while there were more in Vancouver (+2.1%).

Employment Insurance beneficiaries by occupation

Looking at the last occupation of EI beneficiaries, in the 12 months to January, the only decrease occurred in education, law and social, community and government services (-5.0%). It was the 12th consecutive month in which an annual decrease occurred in this occupational group. January marked the fifth consecutive month where the number of beneficiaries in manufacturing and utilities was little changed on a year-over-year basis.

The number of beneficiaries increased in 8 of the 10 major occupational groups. The most notable increases were in management occupations (+6.3%); trades, transport and equipment operators and related occupations (+6.2%); and health occupations (+5.9%). The number of beneficiaries in management occupations, business, finance and administrative occupations, natural and applied science occupations, and trades, transport and equipment operators and related occupations has been increasing on a year-over-year basis since early 2015. In contrast, the upward trend in the number of beneficiaries in health occupations, occupations in art, culture, recreation and sport, and sales and service occupations began after EI policy changes were implemented in July 2016.

Employment Insurance beneficiaries in major demographic groups

In January, there was a decrease in the number of women aged 55 years and older (-1.4%) who were beneficiaries. All of the other major demographic groups were virtually unchanged.

On a year-over-year basis, the number of male (+4.2%) and female (+2.8%) beneficiaries increased in January. Among women, 65.8% of this increase consisted of those aged 55 years and older. Among men, 47.0% of the additional beneficiaries in January were aged 25 to 54 and 52.5% were aged 55 years and older.

Employment Insurance claims

The number of EI claims totalled 227,100 in January, down 10,400 or 4.4% from the previous month.

The number of claims decreased in all provinces in January, with the exception of Newfoundland and Labrador, where it increased, and Quebec, where it was essentially unchanged. Among the provinces, Alberta had the largest reduction in the number of claims (-15.0%). It was the largest monthly decrease in the province since June 2009, excluding offsetting decreases in June and August 2016. This decrease may reflect an increase in the number of people who have either not had insurable employment or not accumulated enough insurable hours in the past 12 months, and who are therefore not eligible to claim EI benefits. As with the decrease in the number of beneficiaries in Alberta, the decrease in the number of claims may also reflect improvement in the provincial economy.

In January, British Columbia (-6.8%) and Ontario (-4.2%) also had decreases in the number of claims. Together with Alberta, they accounted for much of the national decrease.

Compared with 12 months earlier, the number of claims in Canada was down by 8.5% in January.

The number of claims provides an indication of the number of people who could become beneficiaries.

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/170323/dq170323a-eng.htm

Labour Force Survey

February 2017

Employment was little changed in February (+15,000 or +0.1%). An increase in the number of people working full time offset a decline in the number of people working part time. With fewer people searching for work, the unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage points to 6.6%, matching the rate observed in January 2015 and the lowest since October 2008.

In the 12 months to February, employment rose by 288,000 (+1.6%), with most of the gains occurring since July 2016. This coincided with stronger economic growth in the second half of 2016.

In February, there were an estimated 105,000 more people working full time, the second notable increase in three months. In the 12 months to February, full-time employment rose by 235,000 (+1.6%), driven by increases since July. The number of people working part time fell by an estimated 90,000 in February, following a period of growth that began in the autumn of 2015.

In the 12 months to February, the total number of hours worked was little changed.

From January to February, employment increased among core-aged women (25 to 54 years old) and men aged 55 and older. There was little employment change among the other demographic groups.

Provincially, employment rose in British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. In contrast, there were fewer people working in Nova Scotia and in Newfoundland and Labrador. Employment was essentially unchanged in the other five provinces.

In February, more people were employed in wholesale and retail trade, public administration, and in transportation and warehousing.

Employment increases for core-aged women

Employment among women aged 25 to 54 increased for the third consecutive month, up 18,000 in February. Their unemployment rate remained at 5.3% as more women in this age group participated in the labour market. More core-aged women worked full time in the month (+84,000) and this was partly offset by fewer of them working part time (-65,000). The recent employment gains for core-aged women boosted their year-over-year employment growth to 98,000 (+1.7%).

Following a notable increase in January, employment for 25- to 54-year-old men held steady in February. Compared with February 2016, employment for this group increased by 63,000 (+1.0%), driven by gains since the fall of 2016. In the 12 months to February, the unemployment rate for core-aged men fell by a full percentage point to 5.8%.

Employment among men aged 55 and older increased by 14,000 in February, and their unemployment rate was 6.3%. In the 12 months to February, employment among older men rose by 63,000 (+3.1%) and their population increased by 154,000 (+3.1%).

In February, employment among women aged 55 and older held steady and their unemployment rate was 5.2%. Compared with 12 months earlier, 56,000 (+3.4%) more women aged 55 and older were working, and the number of women in this age group rose by 156,000 (+2.9%).

Employment among youths aged 15 to 24 was little changed in February, both in the month and on a year-over-year basis, while their population continued to decline. Their unemployment rate was down by 0.9 percentage points to 12.4% in February, as fewer youths searched for work.

Provincial summary

In February, employment increased by 19,000 in British Columbia, continuing an upward trend that began in the spring of 2015. The increase was fueled by gains in full-time work and was spread across several industries. In the 12 months to February, employment increased by 85,000 or 3.6%, the fastest growth rate among the provinces. Over the same period, the unemployment rate fell by 1.4 percentage points to 5.1%, the lowest since October 2008. In February, British Columbia posted the lowest unemployment rate among the provinces.

Employment in Saskatchewan rose by 8,000 in February, the largest increase since April 2012. Nearly all of the gains were in full-time work and stemmed from the services sector. Prior to the increase in February, total employment had been relatively flat since the spring of 2016. In February, the provincial unemployment rate fell by 0.4 percentage points to 6.0%.

In Manitoba, employment increased by 3,400 in February, driven by gains in full-time work and in construction. At the same time, the unemployment rate fell by 0.3 percentage points to 5.8%, the second lowest among the provinces following British Columbia. The employment increase in February boosted year-over-year gains for the province to 6,600 (+1.0%).

In February, the number of people working full time increased by 53,000 in Ontario, offsetting a similar-sized decrease in the number of people working part time, resulting in little change in overall employment for the month. Building on gains since July, employment in Ontario was up by 108,000 (+1.5%) on a year-over-year basis, with virtually all of the increase in full-time work. In February, the unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage points to 6.2% as the number of people searching for work edged down.

There was little employment change in Quebec for the second consecutive month. In the 12 months to February, employment was up by 83,000 (+2.0%), powered by gains in the second half of 2016. The unemployment rate in February was 6.4%, down 1.1 percentage points from 12 months earlier.

In Alberta, employment held steady in February, with full-time gains (+19,000) offsetting losses in part-time employment (-18,000). Following significant declines from the autumn of 2015 to the summer of 2016, total employment in the province has been stable in recent months. In February, the unemployment rate fell by 0.5 percentage points to 8.3%, as fewer people searched for work.

Following an increase in January, there were 6,800 fewer people working in Nova Scotia in February and the unemployment rate was 8.1%. The employment decline was largely the result of a drop in part-time employment. Although total employment in the province decreased in February, it was little changed compared with 12 months earlier.

Employment in Newfoundland and Labrador fell by 3,800 in February and the unemployment rate was 14.2%. The employment decline in February offset an increase in January and continued a downward trend that began in May 2016. In the 12 months to February, employment in the province fell by 6,400 (-2.8%).

Industry perspective

Following little change in the previous three months, employment in wholesale and retail trade increased by 19,000 in February and edged up by 35,000 (+1.3%) on a year-over-year basis. The additional employment in February followed higher sales reported in the latter part of 2016 at both the wholesale and retail level.

Employment in transportation and warehousing increased for the second consecutive month, up 8,800 in February. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in this industry increased by 34,000 (+3.8%).

Employment in public administration also increased for the second consecutive month, up 12,000 in February, bringing total gains to 65,000 (+7.2%) on a year-over-year basis. In the 12 months to February, there were more people employed at the federal level and also at the local, municipal and regional level.

The number of private and public sector employees was little changed in February. On a year-over-year basis, increases in the number of private sector employees totalled 253,000 (+2.2%), spread across several service industries, while public sector employment rose by 78,000 (+2.2%), driven by gains in public administration.

The number of self-employed workers was little changed in February and edged down from 12 months earlier.

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/170310/dq170310a-eng.htm

Payroll Employment, Earnings & Hours

January 2017

Average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees were $967 in January, little changed from December and up 1.8% from January 2016.

In general, changes in weekly earnings reflect a number of factors, including wage growth; changes in the composition of employment by industry, occupation and level of job experience; and average hours worked per week.

Non-farm payroll employees worked an average of 32.7 hours per week in January, down from 32.8 hours in both the previous month and 12 months earlier.

Average weekly earnings by sector

Compared with 12 months earlier, average weekly earnings rose in 4 of the 10 largest industrial sectors. Earnings increased in manufacturing, educational services, health care and social assistance, as well as wholesale trade. At the same time, earnings declined in accommodation and food services, while there was little change in the remaining large sectors.

Average weekly earnings in manufacturing rose 4.7% to $1,115. Growth was driven by increases in several manufacturing subsectors (food, wood products, and petroleum and coal products) and was widespread across the provinces, most notably in Ontario and Quebec. Part of the increase was also due to earnings in manufacturing being at a relatively low point in January 2016.

Average weekly earnings in educational services grew 3.3% to $1,037. The most notable growth was in universities, which had gains in both employment and earnings. Earnings in educational services have been on an upward trend since March 2016.

Average weekly earnings in health care and social assistance rose 3.1% to $883. Increases in earnings were widespread throughout the sector, with the largest in nursing and residential care facilities.

Average weekly earnings in wholesale trade were up 3.0% to $1,173, with the largest increases among merchant wholesalers of machinery, equipment and supplies as well as building material and supplies.

On the other hand, earnings in accommodation and food services fell 2.0% to $369. At the same time, the number of employees increased, but average weekly hours decreased. The most notable decline in earnings was in full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places, which is among the lowest-earning industries.

Average weekly earnings by province

Compared with January 2016, average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees rose in 9 of the 10 provinces, led by New Brunswick. There was little change in Alberta.

Average weekly earnings in New Brunswick increased 3.0% to $889. Gains were most notable in health care and social assistance as well as manufacturing.

In British Columbia, average weekly earnings grew by 2.7% to $931. There were increases in several industries, led by administrative and support services and educational services.

Average weekly earnings in Prince Edward Island were up 2.6% to $828, particularly in finance and insurance, as well as health care and social assistance.

Average weekly earnings in Saskatchewan rose 2.4% to $1,008. Increases in earnings were spread across several sectors, driven by health care and social assistance as well as educational services.

In Manitoba, average weekly earnings were up 2.3% to $898, with notable gains in finance and insurance, as well as construction.

Average weekly earnings in Ontario rose 2.2% to $986, with manufacturing, finance and insurance, as well as health care and social assistance contributing the most to the increase.

In Alberta, average weekly earnings were little changed. While there were increases in health care and social assistance as well as educational services, earnings in natural resources, construction, and professional, scientific and technical services held steady. This follows large year-over-year declines since early 2015. As a result, the downward trend that began in 2015 has lessened in the second half of 2016.

Non-farm payroll employment by sector

The total number of non-farm payroll employees in January was little changed from the previous month. However, there were increases in several sectors, notably in manufacturing, accommodation and food services, and public administration. At the same time, there were fewer payroll employees working in educational services and construction.

Compared with January 2016, the number of non-farm payroll employees was up 246,600 (+1.6%). The largest increases were in health care and social assistance (+49,100 or +2.7%), accommodation and food services (+36,800 or +2.9%) and retail trade (+30,500 or +1.6%).

Over the same period, there were declines in mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction (-5,100 or -2.6%), although the downward trend that began in the fall of 2014 has lessened. Wholesale trade (-4,000 or -0.5%) also declined.

Recent labour-market developments

In the 12 months to January, the pace of employment growth has been similar in both of Statistics Canada's monthly surveys with data on employment: the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours and the Labour Force Survey.

During this same period, both surveys showed employment gains in Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia. For example, combined with employment gains, average weekly earnings rose 2.2% in Ontario, outpacing the national average (+1.8%). At the same time, the unemployment rate for the province declined 0.3 percentage points to 6.4%.

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/170331/dq170331b-eng.htm