Northeast B.C. unemployment relatively unchanged at 6%

Unemployment in Northeast B.C. remained flat in November at 6%.

There were 39,000 employed and 2,500 unemployed in region, according to the latest estimates released by Statistics Canada on Friday, Dec. 6. Unemployment in the region was recorded at 6.2% in October, with 2,600 unemployed.

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Year-over-year, the unemployment rate is up from 4.3% in October 2018, when 39,900 were working and just 1,800 were unemployed.

The Canadian economy lost 71,200 net jobs in November, and British Columbia is one of three provinces that contributed to the decline.

From October to November, B.C.’s economy shed 18,200 net jobs. The loss was matched by Alberta and outpaced by only Quebec, which lost 45,000 net jobs month-to-month.

That employment shift in B.C. – a drop of 18.2% over October – was weighed down by a 20.5% decrease in full-time employment. Both goods-producing sectors (-4.8%) and services sectors (-13.4%) registered losses. Part-time work increased by 2.3% overall.

Employment was flat at 41,300 jobs in forestry, fishing, mining, and oil and gas, with job gains largely seen in the finance sector, up 6,200 jobs.

There were losses in manufacturing (-2,500 jobs), construction (-3,000 jobs), transport and warehousing (-3,100 jobs), and accommodation and food services (-5,800 jobs).

B.C.’s unemployment rate also rose in November, up to 5% from 4.7% the month before. It still remains the lowest rate in the country.

Nationally, the widespread nature of November job losses are “discouraging by any measure,” according to TD Canada senior economist Brian DePratto.

Full-time and part-time work saw declines, as did private sector employment, public sector employment and self-employment. While it is just one month of data, DePratto noted jobs trends in Canada are “unquestionably softening.”

The bigger question, he wrote, is whether weakness persists.

Unemployment rates in B.C.:

Cariboo - 6.8

Northeast - 6.0

Kootenay - 4.8

Lower Mainland Southwest - 4.8

Thompson-Okanagan - 4.7

Vancouver Island and Coast - 4.3 

North Coast and Nechako - 4.1

With a report from Business in Vancouver

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at 

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