Labour Shortage or Surplus?

Andrew will undoubtedly post a more comprehensive analysis of today’s Labour Force Survey. What strikes me is that, despite all of the gloomy news about an impending recession, Canadians continue flooding into the labour market in search of paid work. In March, the creation of only 14,600 new jobs drew 57,100 more people into the labour force. As a result, unemployment shot up by 42,600 to 1.1 million. This one-month surge pushed the unemployment rate from 5.8% to 6.0%.

Also, questions persist about the quality of the modest number of jobs that were created. A 34,200 increase in part-time employment masked a 19,600 drop in full-time employment. This decline in full-time employment was concentrated in Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, PEI, and Newfoundland.

2 comments

  • What strikes me is that, despite all of the gloomy news about an impending recession, Canadians continue flooding into the labour market in search of paid work.

    Part of the explanation might be in this sentence from the LFS release:

    “Year-over-year growth in average hourly wages remained high at 4.7% in March, well above the most recent increase of 1.8% in the Consumer Price Index.”

  • Who knew Canadians were so prescient with respect to wage information!

    It could also be that as full time employment declines, consumer debt levels remain and households have to provide more individuals seeking paid employment.

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