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Job Losses Top 7K in May, Jobless Rate Stays Put

10 June 2018

Provincially, B.C.'s unemployment rate nudged downward to 4.8 per cent, down from 5.0 per cent.

Unemployment in the region has risen sharply from the beginning of 2018, when the rate was recorded at 3.8 per cent, with just 1,500 unemployed - right on Stats Canada's threshold where so few are unemployed the agency can't release the data because of confidentiality reasons.

On a national level, the economy lost 7,500 jobs in May as a drop in full-time employment was only partially offset by an increase in part-time jobs, Statistics Canada said. British Columbia has the lowest unemployment rate in the nation, while Quebec, at 5.3 per cent, and Ontario, at 5.7 per cent, had the second- and third-best unemployment rates.

This we do know: It's the first time in a decade that the jobless rate for Ottawa-Gatineau has been below five per cent for three consecutive months, suggesting the local economy has finally recovered from the effects of the 2008-09 recession.

"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.

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Average hourly wages, a key indicator watched by the Bank of Canada, increased 3.9 per cent compared with a year ago, the monthly reading's largest annual increase since April 2009.

Goods-producing industries led the way lower, shedding 29k positions due to weakness in manufacturing and construction.

On the contrary, the service-sector continued to add jobs, with notable gains in accommodation and food services, and professional services. In Saskatchewan, full-time employment fell by 1,500 positions and 800 part-time jobs.

The slowdown is not expected to be a major destabilizing jot to the market, as Canada has still added a net 238,000 jobs over the past 12 months.

Job Losses Top 7K in May, Jobless Rate Stays Put