Northeast B.C. unemployment jumps to 7.8% in March

Northeast B.C. lost more than 1,000 jobs in March as unemployment spiked nearly two percentage points to 7.8%, according to the latest labour force survey.

There were an estimated 37,700 people employed in the region, down from 38,900 in February when unemployment was at 6%, according to the survey.

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Year-over-year, unemployment is up from the March 2018 rate of 5.7%, and when 38,200 people were working.

B.C. added 7,900 jobs overall in March, with the unemployment rate edging up 0.2 percentage points to 4.7% between February and March as more people entered the workforce.

The province saw job gains in agriculture, up 2,500 jobs, and in construction, up 3,100 jobs. The province also saw more jobs in the financial sector, up 7,700, and in public administration, up 4,500 jobs.

The province saw job losses in fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas, down 1,900 jobs, and in manufacturing, down 1,600 jobs. Jobs were down by 1,600 in transportation and warehousing, and down 1,900 in the accommodations and food service sector.

Canada saw 7,200 job losses, though the national unemployment remained unchanged at 5.8%. Quebec saw the biggest drop in employment, down 12,900 jobs, while Ontario saw 8,800 losses. Alberta register 1,800 job losses.

Unemployment rates in B.C.:

Northeast - 7.8
Cariboo - 6.4
Thompson-Okanagan - 5.3
Lower Mainland Southwest - 4.9
Kootenay - 4.7
North Coast and Nechako - 3.8
Vancouver Island and Coast - 3.6

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at 

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