Economy

Northeast BC unemployment rises to 6% in February

Northeast BC unemployment rises to 6% in February”

"The ongoing gains in employment suggest that the current soft patch in broader activity is not morphing into something more ominous", BMO chief economist Douglas Porter wrote to investors. The unemployment rate was also similar one year ago at 5.8%, though it jumped as high as 6% and dipped down to 5.6% within those 12 months.

Meanwhile, Canada's unemployment rate isn't budging despite job growth in February. At the same time, there were fewer workers in accommodation and food services, as well as transportation and warehousing. Statistics Canada reported on Friday that employers added 55,900 jobs in February, far exceeding analyst expectations of flat job numbers.

Canada's employment gains were even stronger than those south of the border.

"It was a great report card for the Canadian jobs market and it flies in the face of some of the other statistics that we've been seeing lately out of Canada", said Scott Smith, managing partner at Viewpoint Investment Partners.

In addition, the Ontario Government said in a release that Kitchener-Waterloo-Barrie has the largest employment growth year-over-year across the province at seven per cent growth.

By region, Ontario saw the biggest employment increase last month with the addition of 36,900 jobs. The economy added 46,200 services sector jobs, led by professional, scientific and technical services for the third time in four months, along with 9,500 goods producing jobs, led by gains in natural resources. The average year-over-year wage growth of permanent employees - a figure closely watched by the central bank - was 2.2 percent in February, up from 1.8 percent in January. In particular, it focuses on a reading called "wage common", which incorporates payroll data from several sources, not just from the labour force survey.

According to BC Stats, the province saw job gains in fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas, up 2,500 jobs, and in retail and wholesale trade, up 3,500 jobs. The increase helped the youth jobless rate move down to 10.8 per cent, from 11.2 per cent in January.



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