Canadian Unemployment Rate Declines in May Mask Job Market Weakness

from Brittney Windatt

The month of May brought a 1.6 percent increase in total employment over the previous 12 months, causing unemployment to drop 0.2 percent to 7.4 percent.   But a closer look paints a less optimistic picture: The increase in employment for the month of May was driven largely by a decline in the number of people looking for work and by more people becoming self-employed.   Private sector jobs growth remains weak.
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Canadian Job Market Showed Good Overall Performance in March 2011

March 2011 was largely dominated by bad news for the economy: Most notably the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and the deepening of the Libyan conflict. The disaster in Japan hit Canada’s local economy by disrupting the supply chains of local manufacturers. In Ontario, the impact on the automotive sector was particularly severe. The Honda plant in Alliston, for example, cut production by more than 50% indefinitely, apparently because the Japanese disaster made it impossible for it to source electrical parts that go into vehicles it assembles. The Libyan crisis also lead to some (potential as well as real) disruptions in the oil supply.   Employers typically respond to such signs of uncertainty by placing hiring decision on the backburner until the future becomes more clear (and brighter). So it was quite refreshing to see that Canada’s job market did actually quite well in March.
Continue reading Canadian Job Market Showed Good Overall Performance in March 2011

Canada’s Job Market Remained Weak in February

Statistics Canada’s monthly job market survey for February 2011 was released on Friday, March 11th and paints a bleak picture. February saw employment gains of some 15,000 jobs, but these came on the heals of self-employed increasing by 26,000 jobs. This is hardly encouraging because many people pursue self-employment simply because they cannot find jobs – but the income that they generate tends to often be less than what they would expect to make if they were employed. This means that actual employment dropped by 11,000. The number of private sector workers declined. Continue reading Canada’s Job Market Remained Weak in February

March Saw Sharpest Increase in Number of EI Recepients Since Recession Began

According to a report released by Statistics Canada recently, 681,400 people were receiving regular Employment Insurance benefits in March 2009, up by 65,300 or 10.6% from the previous month. The strongest percent increases occurred in Alberta and British Columbia, but this to some extent is due to the fact that these provinces had low unemployment rates compared to other parts of the country at the beginning of the recession – so now they seem bound to catch up with the rest of the country. Continue reading March Saw Sharpest Increase in Number of EI Recepients Since Recession Began