Canadian employment grew for the fifth consecutive month in October according to Statistics Canada, inching up by 31,000 to 19.162 million (0.2%, m/m). Canadian employment had recovered to its pre-pandemic level in September and remains above that level in October. Since the prior survey period, proof-of-vaccination initiatives continued to be implemented in workforces across the country while capacity limits were lifted.
Across Canada, employment gains in retail trade (+72,000) were offset by declines in accommodation and food services (-27,000). The gains in retail trade pushed employment in this sector back to its pre-pandemic level in October. The Canadian unemployment rate declined for a fifth consecutive month to 6.7%, the lowest level since the onset of the pandemic. The unemployment rate is now within 1% of the rate in February of 2020 (5.7%).
In BC, employment grew by 10,400 to 2.692 million (0.39%, m/m), once again hitting the highest level since the pandemic began. The unemployment rate declined by 0.3 in October to 5.6%, the lowest level since the pandemic began. Only Manitoba has a lower unemployment rate in Canada, while Quebec is tied with BC for the second-lowest rate.
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