Wednesday, 24 October, 2018

Northeast B.C. saw unemployment rate jump to almost 8% in May

The unemployment rate dropped for Alberta and Calgary last month.					SunMedia The unemployment rate dropped for Alberta and Calgary last month. SunMedia
Priscilla Morrison | 10 June, 2018, 17:53

According to Statistics Canada, Barrie's unemployment rate dropped to 7.4 per cent last month.

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

"Add this week, several other important indicators and the Bank of Canada should be prepared to raise rates next month, avoiding a new turmoil on this front", said Kavcic.

Average hourly wages rose 3.9 per cent from a year earlier, matching a pace last seen in July 2012. However, that was offset by an nearly equal number of residents entering the labour force looking for work, which caused the unemployment rate to remain unchanged at 4.4 per cent - reportedly its lowest level in some 30 years. Economists interpreted the change as a hawkish signal suggesting that the next interest rate hike may be sooner rather than later. On a sector basis, goods-producing industries led the way down, with a decline of 18,300 manufacturing jobs and a drop of 13,000 in construction.

Gains in employment rose by 18,000 in accommodation and food services, driven by growth in British Columbia.

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The federal agency says the number of people working in the area climbed by 1,400 in May.

In Quebec, a drop in full-time work was offset by a gain in part-time to leave the province little changed for the month.

Elsewhere the gainers in May were: Professional services (up 3,500 jobs compared to April), transportation & warehousing (up 2,100), business services (a gain of 2,100) and construction (up 1,900).

Looking across the provinces, most of the decline could be due to B.C., where employment dropped 12.4k in May.

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