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  • Mobility pricing must be fair and equitable for all April 12, 2018
    As Metro Vancouver’s population has grown, so have its traffic congestion problems. Whether it’s a long wait to cross a bridge or get on a bus, everyone can relate to the additional time and stress caused by a transportation system under strain. Mobility pricing is seen as a solution to Metro Vancouver’s transportation challenges with […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Budget 2018: The Most Disappointing Budget Ever March 14, 2018
    Premier Pallister’s Trump-esque statement that budget 2018 was going to be the “best budget ever” has fallen a bit flat. Instead of a bold plan to deal with climate change, poverty and our crumbling infrastructure, we are presented with two alarmist scenarios to justify further tax cuts and a lack of decisive action: the recent […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • 2018 Federal Budget Analysis February 14, 2018
    Watch this space for response and analysis of the federal budget from CCPA staff and our Alternative Federal Budget partners. More information will be added as it is available. Commentary and Analysis Some baby steps for dad and big steps forward for women, by Kate McInturff (CCPA) An ambition constrained budget, by David Macdonald (CCPA) Five things […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • CED in Manitoba - The Video January 29, 2018
    Community Economic Development in Manitoba - nudging capitalism out of the way?
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • With regional management BC’s iconic forest industry can benefit British Columbians rather than multinational corporations January 17, 2018
    Forests are one of the iconic symbols of British Columbia, and successive governments and companies operating here have largely focussed on the cheap, commodity lumber business that benefits industry. Former provincial forestry minister Bob Williams, who has been involved with the industry for five decades, proposes regional management of this valuable natural resource to benefit […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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The Progressive Economics Forum

EI: The Decline Resumes

Statistics Canada reports that, after February’s pause, Employment Insurance (EI) resumed its contraction in March. Specifically, 24,200 fewer Canadians received regular EI benefits. The key question is whether these unemployed workers found jobs or simply ran out of benefits.

The Labour Force Survey indicated that employment rose by 17,900 in March. Therefore, it seems unlikely that everyone leaving EI found a job.

Meanwhile, unemployment declined by only 4,300 in March. EI is contracting much faster than unemployment. In March, just 44% of officially unemployed Canadians received EI benefits (668,100 out of 1,515,100).

Canada’s labour market has recovered somewhat over the past year. However, both total unemployment and the unemployment rate are much closer to the peaks reached during the economic crisis than to pre-recession levels. Yet the EI program has already fallen back to its pre-recession level of coverage, in terms of the proportion of unemployed workers receiving benefits.

The federal government should improve EI to help a larger proportion of the Canadians who remain unemployed.

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