Economy

B.C. Unemployment rate continues to ride the crest

B.C. Unemployment rate continues to ride the crest

In a note to clients Friday morning, CIBC senior economist Royce Mendes wrote how the "fairly unremarkable near-consensus 11K gain" was a "surprise", given recent wild swings in data from the labour force survey this year.

At 4.1 per cent, Vancouver's unemployment rate was up slightly from 3.9 per cent in September and 4 per cent the previous year.

The number of high-tech jobs slipped by 2,500 from September to October, for a new total of 36,900. That's the lowest since July 2015.

The unemployment rate in the London-area fell again last month and is now under five per cent. Compared with 12 months earlier, national employment was up 1.1 per cent following the addition of 205,900 positions, including 173,000 full-time jobs.

And the average year-over-year wage growth of permanent employees - a figure closely watched by the Bank of Canada - fell to just 1.9 per cent, the lowest since the 1.7 per cent recorded in August 2017.

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While employment was little changed in Ontario, there were fewer people looking for work, lowering the unemployment rate to 5.6 per cent.

The only time the monthly unemployment rate has been lower, since comparable statistics started being recorded in 2001, was in December 2017, when the unemployment rate was 5.5 per cent.

However, the drop is being overshadowed by the lack of job growth cross-country.

According to Statistics Canada, the country added 11,200 net new jobs in October, but the numbers were too low for the agency to consider them statistically significant.