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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 6.5 5.4                

In April 2017, the unemployment rate in BC is 5.4% and 8.7% in Alberta.

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


Labour Force

BC Highlights

The unemployment rate in British Columbia was 5.4% in March, up from 5.1% in February, but lower than it was in March 2016, when it was 6.4%. Compared to February, there were 13,900 more people in the labour force. Employment grew (+4,200) during this time period, but the number of unemployed also went up (+9,700). Over the past twelve months, job growth (+81,900) was greater than the growth in the labour force (+60,000).

Compared to February, there were 2,200 fewer full-time jobs, while part-time jobs increased by 6,300.

In March, employment in the public sector went down (-6,900), while the number of jobs in the private sector grew (+18,600). The number of self-employed individuals fell (-7,600) during the same time period.

Provincial Comparisons

At 5.4%, British Columbia's unemployment rate remained the lowest in Canada during the month of March. Manitoba (5.5%) and Saskatchewan (6.0%) recorded the second and third lowest unemployment rates. At 8.4%, Alberta's unemployment rate was tied at sixth lowest among the provinces.

National Highlights

During the month of March, employment in Canada was little changed (+19,400 or +0.1%), while the unemployment rate rose 0.1 percentage points to 6.7% as more people searched for work.

Gender

In March, employment in British Columbia for men (aged 25 years and over) grew by 2,900 jobs, while the labour force increased by 7,600. As a result, the unemployment rate was 4.9%, up 0.3 percentage points from the previous month.

For women (aged 25 years and over), employment decreased by 2,300 jobs. The labour force also contracted, though at a slower pace (-1,900), with the unemployment rate steady at 4.3%.

Compared to March 2016, the unemployment rate for men was down by 1.0 percentage points to 4.9%, and for women it was down by 0.4 percentage points to 4.3%. Jobs for men increased by 23,300 (+2.2%) compared to a year ago, and for women employment climbed by 38,500 (+4.0%).

Youths Aged 15 to 24 Years

The unemployment rate for youth aged 15 to 24 years rose by 1.0 percentage points to 9.7% in March. Employment increased by 3,600 jobs while the labour force strengthened by 8,200 people. Compared to March 2016, the unemployment rate for youth decreased by 2.8 percentage points to 9.7%.

Industry

In March, employment in the goods-producing sector was relatively unchanged (-1,100 or -0.2%) overall. The majority of the employment losses were in agriculture (-2,500 or -8.7%) and construction (-1,700 or -0.8%). Employment increased for forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas (+3,700 or +7.7%). Compared to March 2016, the goods-producing sector gained 9,800 (+2.1%) jobs.

Employment in the services-producing sector increased by 5,300 (+0.3%) jobs in March. Industries posting gains included information, culture and recreation (+12,000 or +9.3%), wholesale and retail trade (+8,500 or +2.3%), and other services (+2,700 or +2.3%). Accommodation and food services accounted for the largest decline in the sector (-7,500 or -4.1%), followed by educational services (-6,600 or -4.0%) and public administration (-3,800 or -3.6%). The services-produced sector expanded by 72,100 (+3.8%) jobs since March 2016.

BC Stats Infoline

Employment Insurance

March 2017

In March, 551,100 people received regular Employment Insurance (EI) benefits, down slightly (-2,900 or -0.5%) from February.

There were fewer beneficiaries in six provinces, notably Alberta (-4.1%), Prince Edward Island (-3.4%) and Nova Scotia (-2.4%). Smaller decreases were recorded in New Brunswick (-1.7%), British Columbia (-1.3%) and Newfoundland and Labrador (-1.1%).

In contrast, the number of beneficiaries increased in Quebec (+1.9%) and Saskatchewan (+1.7%), while there was little change in Ontario and Manitoba.

The number of people receiving regular benefits edged up 3,800 or 0.7% in the 12 months to March.

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

Provincial and sub-provincial overview

In March, the number of people receiving benefits in Alberta was down 4.1% to 84,400, the third consecutive monthly decline. Data from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) show that employment in Alberta has been on a slight upward trend since the autumn of 2016. On a year-over-year basis, however, the number of beneficiaries in the province was up 21.1%.

In Prince Edward Island, the number of people receiving benefits declined 3.4% in March to 7,800. Compared with March 2016, the number of beneficiaries increased by 2.9%.

The number of beneficiaries in Nova Scotia fell 2.4% to 28,600 in March, offsetting a similar-sized increase the previous month. In the 12 months to March, the number of beneficiaries in the province was up 3.9%.

In New Brunswick, 33,100 people received benefits in March, down 1.7% from the previous month. On a year-over-year basis, the number of beneficiaries in the province was little changed.

In March, the number of people receiving benefits in British Columbia was down 1.3% to 52,700. Compared with March 2016, the number of EI recipients in the province declined by 2.1%. The number of beneficiaries in British Columbia has been on a downward trend since the autumn of 2016, coinciding with strength in the provincial labour market. According to data from the LFS, the unemployment rate in the province was 5.4% in March, the lowest among the provinces.

In Newfoundland and Labrador, 36,800 people received benefits in March, down 1.1% from the previous month. On a year-over-year basis, the number of people receiving benefits in the province increased 8.6%.

In Quebec, 134,600 people received benefits in March, up 1.9% compared with the previous month.  Despite the monthly increase, the number of beneficiaries in Quebec decreased on a year-over-year basis by 7.4%, the fastest decline among the provinces. Furthermore, the number of beneficiaries in Quebec has remained at historically low levels, coinciding with strength in provincial employment, especially in the second half of 2016. According to data from the LFS, Quebec's unemployment rate decreased 1.0 percentage point to 6.4% in the 12 months to March.

The number of beneficiaries in Saskatchewan was up 1.7% to 18,400 in March, the first monthly increase since October 2016. Compared with March 2016, the number of recipients in the province was up 14.1%.

Employment Insurance beneficiaries by occupation

In the 12 months to March, the number of people receiving benefits was up in 6 of the 10 broad occupational groups, most notably art, culture, recreation and sport (+11.9%), management (+7.4%), health (+7.0%) and sales and service (+5.3%). On the other hand, there were fewer beneficiaries whose last job was in manufacturing and utilities (-4.1%), natural and applied sciences (-1.6%) and trades, transport and equipment operators (-1.1%). There was little change in natural resources, agriculture and related production occupations.

Employment Insurance claims

The number of EI claims totalled 230,100 in March, virtually unchanged from the previous month. The number of claims provides an indication of the number of people who could become beneficiaries.

In March, notable changes in the number of claims were observed in every province except Newfoundland and Labrador. Decreases were led by Alberta (-5.5%), where the number of claims has been trending downward since the autumn of 2016. Claims in the province have been gradually returning to levels seen before the commodities downturn that began in the latter half of 2014.

Claims also declined in Quebec (-4.9%), Prince Edward Island (-3.8%), Saskatchewan (-2.2%) and Manitoba (-2.1%).

In contrast, the number of claims increased in Ontario (+5.5%), Nova Scotia (+2.2%), New Brunswick (+1.7%) and British Columbia (+1.3%).

Compared with March 2016, EI claims were down 2.9% at the national level.

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/170518/dq170518b-eng.htm?CMP=mstatcan

Labour Force Survey

April 2017

Employment was little changed in April, while the unemployment rate declined 0.2 percentage points to 6.5%, the lowest rate since October 2008. The decrease was mostly the result of fewer youth searching for work.

Compared with 12 months earlier, there were 276,000 (+1.5%) more people employed and the unemployment rate was 0.6 percentage points lower. Over the same period, the total number of hours worked rose 1.1%.

Highlights

In April, employment increased among people 55 and older, while it declined among men aged 25 to 54. Employment was little changed among women aged 25 to 54 and youths aged 15 to 24.

Employment rose in British Columbia and Prince Edward Island, while it was virtually unchanged in the other provinces.

More people were employed in educational services, health care and social assistance, and transportation and warehousing in April. At the same time, employment declined in business, building and other support services, as well as in accommodation and food services.

Public sector employment increased in April, while the number of private sector employees fell. Self-employment was little changed.

Demographic overview

Employment among the population aged 55 and older rose by 24,000 in April, mostly in full-time work, and their unemployment rate declined 0.6 percentage points to 5.6%. On a year-over-year basis, people 55 and older had the fastest rate of employment growth (+3.6% or +133,000) compared with the other demographic groups. This is primarily the result of the continued transition of the baby-boom cohort into this older age group.

For men aged 25 to 54, employment declined by 20,000 in April, mostly in full-time work, and their unemployment rate increased 0.3 percentage points to 6.1%. Since August 2016, their employment gains have totalled 81,000. On a year-over-year basis, their unemployment rate was down 0.4 percentage points.

Among women aged 25 to 54, employment held steady in April and their unemployment rate was little changed at 5.1%. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment for this group was up 71,000 (+1.2%), virtually all in full-time work.

Employment for youth aged 15 to 24 was little changed in April, while their unemployment rate fell 1.1 percentage points to 11.7% as fewer of them searched for work. This is the lowest unemployment rate for youth since September 2008. On a year-over-year basis, youth employment was virtually unchanged.

Provincial summary

In British Columbia, employment increased by 11,000 in April and the unemployment rate was little changed at 5.5%. Employment in the province has been on an upward trend with notable increases in four of the past five months. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in British Columbia increased by 80,000 (+3.4%), mostly in full-time work.

There were an estimated 800 more people working in Prince Edward Island in April and the unemployment rate for the province was little changed at 10.3%. Prince Edward Island has had relatively strong employment growth since the autumn of 2016. On a year-over-year basis, employment in the province was up 2,500 (+3.5%).

In Ontario, employment held steady in April. The unemployment rate fell 0.6 percentage points to 5.8%, mostly due to a decline in the number of youth searching for work. This is the lowest unemployment rate for the province since January 2001. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in Ontario was up 87,000 (+1.2%).

In Quebec, both the employment level and the unemployment rate were little changed in the month. In the 12 months to April, employment in the province rose by 88,000 or 2.1%, mostly in the second half of 2016. On a year-over-year basis, the unemployment rate in Quebec declined 0.8 percentage points to 6.6%.

Employment in Alberta held steady in April after a period of growth that began in autumn 2016. The unemployment rate in the province was 7.9% in April, down 0.5 percentage points from the previous month as fewer people searched for work.

Industry perspective

Employment in educational services rose by 19,000 in April, mostly in Ontario and British Columbia. This offset a similar-sized decline observed the previous month. Compared with 12 months earlier, there were 30,000 (+2.4%) more people working in educational services across Canada.

In health care and social assistance, employment increased by 12,000 in April, with the bulk of the growth in British Columbia. On a year-over-year basis, overall employment in this industry rose by 31,000 (+1.3%).

There were 8,800 more people working in transportation and warehousing in April. The increase was largely in Ontario. In the 12 months to April, there were 24,000 (+2.6%) more people working in this industry at the national level.

In contrast, employment in business, building and other support services fell by 19,000 in April, with declines primarily split between Quebec and British Columbia. Nationally, employment in this industry was virtually unchanged on a year-over-year basis. Business, building and other support services is a broad industry that includes, for example, administrative or cleaning services to buildings, as well as employment services.

Employment in accommodation and food services declined by 12,000 in April, mostly in Ontario and Quebec. For Canada as a whole, employment in this industry was slightly lower than in April 2016.

Public sector employment increased by 35,000 in April, largely in health care and social assistance and educational services. At the same time, the number of private sector employees fell by 51,000. On a year-over-year basis, the number of private sector employees rose by 152,000 (+1.3%), while public sector employment was up 92,000 (+2.6%).

Self-employment was little changed both in the month and compared with April 2016.

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/170505/dq170505a-eng.htm

Payroll Employment, Earnings & Hours

March 2017

Average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees were $966 in March, little changed from February and up 0.9% from March 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 32.6 hours per week in March, little changed from February and down from 32.9 hours observed in March 2016.

Average weekly earnings by sector

In the 12 months to March, average weekly earnings rose in 3 of the 10 largest industrial sectors: wholesale trade; accommodation and food services; and educational services. Earnings were little changed in the remaining large sectors.

Average weekly earnings in wholesale trade grew 3.9% to $1,189, with machinery, equipment and supplies wholesalers contributing most to the increase. Several provinces reported earnings growth in this sector, particularly Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Ontario. Earnings in wholesale trade have trended upward since autumn 2016.

Average weekly earnings in accommodation and food services increased 2.7% to $379. A large employment increase in this low-earning sector moderated the year-over-year growth of national average weekly earnings. Most of the earnings growth in this sector was observed in the full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places industry. Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick had the largest increases in average weekly earnings.

In educational services, average weekly earnings were up 2.7% to $1,031, boosted by gains in elementary and secondary schools. The largest increases were observed in Newfoundland and Labrador and Saskatchewan.

Average weekly earnings by province

Compared with March 2016, average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees rose in six provinces: Newfoundland and Labrador, followed by Saskatchewan, Manitoba, British Columbia, Quebec and Ontario. There was little change in the remaining provinces.

Average weekly earnings in Newfoundland and Labrador grew 2.9% to $1,037, driven by increases in construction, educational services, and transportation and warehousing. Earnings in the province have been on an upward trend since spring 2016.

In Saskatchewan, average weekly earnings increased 2.6% to $1,008. Earnings growth was spread across several sectors, with educational services, retail trade, wholesale trade, and public administration contributing most to the gains.

Average weekly earnings in Manitoba were up 2.4% to $908, driven by finance and insurance, as well as construction. Earnings in the province have trended upward since October 2016.

In British Columbia, average weekly earnings grew 1.9% to $933, with the largest increases in administrative and support services, manufacturing, and finance and insurance.

Average weekly earnings in Quebec rose 1.7% to $893. Earnings in the province were boosted by notable gains in professional, scientific and technical services, health care and social assistance, and finance and insurance.

In Ontario, average weekly earnings increased 1.3% to $982. Earnings in the province grew most rapidly in wholesale trade and in information and cultural industries.

In Alberta, average weekly earnings were little changed at $1,118. While there were declines in mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction, and in administrative and support services, earnings in retail trade, construction, and professional, scientific and technical services held steady.

Non-farm payroll employment by sector

The total number of non-farm payroll employees was little changed from February. However, the number of payroll jobs grew in several sectors, with the largest gains in health care and social assistance and mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction. At the same time, the number of payroll employees decreased in wholesale trade, construction, and administrative and support services.

Compared with March 2016, the number of non-farm payroll employees was up 265,400 (+1.7%). The largest increases were in health care and social assistance (+40,400 or +2.2%), accommodation and food services (+30,300 or +2.4%), and professional, scientific and technical services (+25,200 or +2.9%). At the same time, there was a decline in wholesale trade (-4,600 or -0.6%).

Recent labour market developments

In the 12 months to March, 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 (SEPH) and the Labour Force Survey (LFS).

During this period, both surveys showed employment gains in Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and New Brunswick, as well as Prince Edward Island.

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/170525/dq170525a-eng.htm?CMP=mstatcan