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Canada adds 15,400 jobs, unemployment dips to 5.8% but part-time work surges, full-time positions decline

Posted on 15 March 2018 by admin

Statistics Canada’s latest labour force survey, released Friday, showed the country lost 39,300 full-time jobs and generated 54,700 part-time positions in February. It also found the job gains were driven by an increase of 50,300 in public-sector jobs.

OTTAWA—The economy got a job-creation lift last month that nudged the unemployment rate down to 5.8 per cent — but a closer look reveals a rush of part-time work and a big decline in full-time positions.

Statistics Canada’s latest labour force survey, released Friday, showed the country lost 39,300 full-time jobs and generated 54,700 part-time positions in February. It also found the job gains were driven by an increase of 50,300 in public-sector jobs.

The national unemployment rate slipped from 5.9 per cent in January to 5.8 per cent — to match its lowest level since the agency started measuring it in 1976. The jobless rate has only fallen to 5.8 per cent twice during that time, once in 2007 and again in December.

Looking back, the job market added 282,500 positions for a 1.5 per cent expansion over the past 12 months — with growth entirely due to full-time work. Canada’s year-over-year job creation last month showed signs of moderation after the number climbed above 420,000 positions in December.

Experts, including the Bank of Canada, have been expecting the job market’s red-hot pace from last year to cool, along with the rest of the economy as it approaches full capacity.

Manulife Asset Management senior economist Frances Donald said there’s very little in the jobs report that will rock the boat — and she added that in itself is very important.

“These jobs numbers fit quite well into the Bank of Canada’s cautiously optimistic Canadian narrative,” Donald said.

“The Canadian job market, just like the broader economy, is decelerating somewhat, but it’s coming back down to earth in what we might consider a more-reasonable pace of gains with fewer distortions.”

Donald underlined a couple of key indicators from the jobs report — the upward trend for hours worked, which suggests continued strong demand for labour in the economy, and average wage growth that’s still hovering around three per cent, which suggests more Canadians are benefiting from the healthier market.

Average hourly wage growth, which is under close watch by the Bank of Canada ahead of interest-rate decisions, stayed solid at 3.1 per cent. In January, wage growth hit 3.3 per cent following a steady flow of monthly increases after the indicator bottomed out at 0.5 per cent last April.

“At 3.1 per cent in February, wage growth posted a fourth consecutive month above its longer-term average of 2.6 per cent,” Sherry Cooper, chief economist for Dominion Lending Centres, wrote in a research note.

Cooper said the February reading won’t set off inflation warnings for the Bank of Canada, which noted this week that wage growth is still below what it considers a normal level for an economy without labour market slack.

“This suggests the bank will maintain its cautious stance,” she said.

Earlier this week, the central bank highlighted wage growth as one of the key data points that it will scrutinize ahead of future rate decisions. The Bank of Canada kept its trend-setting rate at 1.25 per cent on Wednesday after introducing three hikes since last summer.

The central bank has remained cautiously upbeat about the economy and has said more interest rate hikes will likely be necessary over time, despite mounting protectionist and competitiveness unknowns that have clouded the economic outlook. It said future decisions will continue to be guided by incoming data, such as the economy’s sensitivity to higher rates, the evolution of economic capacity and changes to wage growth and inflation.

Deputy governor Timothy Lane said in a speech Thursday that while the future is subject to notable uncertainties, trends over the past few quarters have been broad-based across regions and sectors, and “quite encouraging.”

Last month’s job growth, while small enough to be statistically insignificant, represents an improvement over the January report that showed a drop of 88,000 positions for the labour force’s steepest one-month drop in nine years.

By industry, the goods-producing sector shed 10,400 positions last month, led by a decline of 16,500 jobs in manufacturing, while the services industries added 25,900 jobs.

The survey also said the number of paid employee jobs increased last month by 58,800 positions, compared with a decrease in self-employed positions of 43,300.

By region, New Brunswick saw the biggest percentage increase — a boost of 1.5 per cent compared with January — as it gained 5,100 jobs. Ontario added 15,700 positions, which was a 0.2 per cent boost compared with January.

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Canada’s unemployment rate falls to lowest in nearly nine years

Posted on 17 August 2017 by admin

Canada’s economy added jobs in July, the eighth consecutive month of growth.

OTTAWA—The economy extended its winning streak in July, posting its eighth consecutive month of job growth while the unemployment rate dropped to its lowest point since the start of the financial crisis nearly nine years ago.

The unemployment rate fell 0.2 percentage points to 6.3 per cent, a level not seen since October 2008, as the number of people looking for work declined, Statistics Canada reported Friday.

The decrease came as the economy pumped out 10,900 net new jobs for the month. That followed staggering employment growth of 45,300 in June and 54,500 in May.

“We can forgive the economy for taking a bit of a breather on job gains in July, given how torrid the pace has been in the prior two months,” Avery Shenfeld, chief economist of CIBC Capital Markets, said in a note to clients.

The July data was fuelled by the addition of 35,100 full-time jobs, offset by the loss of 24,300 part-time positions.

Compared with a year ago, the number of jobs has increased by 388,000, driven by a surge in 354,000 full-time positions.

However, the positive job figures were dampened by the latest numbers on Canada’s trade deficit, which ballooned to $3.6 billion in June from a shortfall of $1.4 billion the previous month.

Benjamin Reitzes, Canadian rates and macro strategist at BMO Capital Markets, said there were some one-time factors affecting the trade numbers.

 “You had some very large declines in exports of metals, gold in particular,” he said, noting that oil prices have also fallen.

“That weighed very heavily on the number.”

Statistics Canada said exports fell 4.3 per cent to $46.5 billion. Shipments of metal and non-metallic mineral products plummeted by 14.9 per cent to $5.3 billion in June after a 12.4 per cent increase in May. Exports of energy products were down 9.2 per cent to $7.3 billion.

On the other side of the ledger, imports gained 0.3 per cent to $50.1 billion. Trade in metal ores, non-metallic minerals, aircraft and other transportation and parts hit record highs.

The latest economic data follows a decision by the Bank of Canada last month to raise its key interest rate target to 0.75 per cent, its first increase in almost seven years.

Reitzes said BMO continues to expect the central bank to wait until October before it raises the rate again, noting that there is still plenty of economic figures to come before the decision.

“It’s tough to see anything really derailing them outside of broadly weaker numbers for October,” he said. “They’ve been clear they want to take back the 50 basis points of easing they put in in 2015, so a hike in October would do that.”

Breaking down the jobs report, the wholesale and retail trade sector gained 22,000 jobs, information, culture and recreation added 18,000 and manufacturing saw an increase of 14,000. About 32,000 jobs in educational services were lost, mainly in Ontario and Alberta.

Regionally, employment in Ontario and Manitoba rose by 26,000 and 4,800, respectively. Alberta lost 14,000 jobs, Newfoundland and Labrador shed 5,300 positions and Prince Edward Island dropped by 1,000.

At Queen’s Park, Economic Development Minister Brad Duguid said the numbers show Ontario’s economy continues to grow “at an impressive rate.”

“We continue to be on a very positive trend,” he told reporters, noting about two-thirds of the 25,500 net new jobs created in the province last month were full-time.

The unemployment rate in Ontario fell to 6.1 per cent from ‎6.4 per cent and has now been below the national average for 28 months, Duguid added.

“It’s one of the lowest we’ve seen in the last two decades.”

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National Bank Once Again Among Greater Toronto’s Best Employers

Posted on 06 December 2012 by admin

Montreal: National Bank is proud to be listed among Greater Toronto’s Best Employers for the third year in a row. This prestigious list is compiled every year by Aon Hewitt, which recognizes businesses in the Greater Toronto Area that stand out for their human resources practices that engage employees.

“Through their active participation in the One client, one bank business development strategy we have been pursuing since 2008, GTA employees are helping to roll out the red carpet for all our clients. An engaging work environment enables us not only to recruit and retain top talent, but also to offer clients a distinctive client experience,” emphasized Louis Vachon, President and Chief Executive Officer of National Bank.

National Bank has been taking part in Aon Hewitt’s survey since it was first launched. The rankings are based on the opinions of the employees, leaders and human resources professionals of participating businesses. The Bank uses the insight gained from its results to enhance its human resources practices and remain a top employer.

This latest achievement, which reflects the commitment of National Bank’s 20,000 employees, comes on the heels of several other distinctions the Bank has received in 2012, including:

  • Canada’s 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures (Waterstone Human Capital)
  • 50 Best Employers in Canada (Aon Hewitt)
  • Lipper Awards for its mutual funds
  • Canada’s Best Diversity Employers (Mediacorp Canada)
  • World’s Strongest Banks (Bloomberg Markets)
  • Best Canadian Brands (Interbrand)

SOURCE: National Bank of Canada

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Useful tips for young job hunters

Posted on 24 October 2012 by admin

Young people though sophisticated in their general understanding of the job search process, are often naive about the mechanics and etiquette that underlie an effective search. Some tips for young job hunters are

a. Don’t pretend you know what you want to do, if you don’t

You do need to know yourself. What are you good at? What kind of work environment do you thrive in – a fast-paced setting? A boss who provides autonomy? Be prepared with compelling examples that speak to these skills and preferences.

b. Fake it, sort of

In interviews, you must communicate that you believe in yourself and your skills, but it’s okay to express some uncertainty. Hiring managers will interpret this as a willingness to learn and the ability to be influenced. Here’s what you should fake: the impression you are really keen to do a particular job even if you aren’t. How you actually feel about the position is your personal business. To land a job, enthusiasm is key.

c. Know your audience

Be cognizant of boundaries; sometimes young people who are comfortable talking to adults forget they are not talking to someone who really cares about them when interacting with strangers. Avoid “over-sharing.”

d. Take advantage of every offer to help

Don’t be shy about asking for assistance. But don’t be obnoxious. Walk that line between being clear about your desire for help while not acting like it is your right to have endless support.

e. Don’t assume people remember you

Most people have short memories. Remind your contact about who referred you and why you are calling.


f. Avoid saying anything that smacks of entitlement

Self-confidence can be interpreted as cockiness rather than a sense of self-worth. Be prudent with the words you use. Never say, “With my degree, I expect stimulating, well-paid work.” (You can think it, just don’t say it.) Or, “How long will I have to do this before I am promoted?”

g. Show true appreciation for help

Save the cool ironic stance for your friends. There is nothing wrong with an enthusiastic message saying, “Thanks a ton for your help.” Remember that your supporters will feel good about having helped you only if you explain the role they played, such as how their introduction to a contact led to an opportunity.

h. Understand timeliness.

And don’t assume people will do what they say. They may forget, or be distracted. Follow up if someone was supposed to get back to you and doesn’t.

i. Don’t be too picky

The trick is to take what you need – experience, income, self-knowledge, exposure – and not to be crushed psychologically. Be flexible about income. Focus more on the skills you will develop and how this job will be a stepping stone, than whether you are working for slave wages.

Weigh the value of paying off student debt, or saving for grad school, with the benefits of experience and opening a door for future opportunities.

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