Un­em­ploy­ment rate falls to 40-year low

The Daily Courier - - CANADA -

OTTAWA — A blast of new jobs last month knocked the coun­try’s un­em­ploy­ment rate down to its low­est level since Statis­tics Canada started mea­sur­ing com­pa­ra­ble data more than 40 years ago — but de­spite eye-catch­ing progress, Fri­day’s num­bers also de­liv­ered dis­ap­point­ment.

Canada added 94,100 net jobs for its largest monthly in­crease since March 2012 when there was a gain of 94,000 jobs, Statis­tics Canada said in its labour force sur­vey. The Novem­ber surge was fu­elled by other pos­i­tives: 89,900 new full­time po­si­tions and 78,600 em­ployee jobs in the pri­vate sec­tor.

The job­less rate fell to 5.6 per cent last month from Oc­to­ber’s read­ing of 5.8 per cent, which had been the pre­vi­ous low mark since com­pa­ra­ble data first be­came avail­able in 1976. The old sta­tis­ti­cal ap­proach — prior to 1976 — reg­is­tered an un­em­ploy­ment rate read­ing of 5.4 per cent in 1974.

In Kelowna, Novem­ber’s job­less rate was 3.9 per cent, down from five per cent the month be­fore.

The im­prove­ments, how­ever, ob­scured a key piece of data: weak­en­ing wage growth.

Year-over-year av­er­age hourly wage growth for per­ma­nent em­ploy­ees con­tin­ued its de­cline in Novem­ber to 1.46 per cent — its low­est read­ing since July 2017.

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