Economy adds 12,000 jobs in September, unemployment rate rises to 7.1 per cent

The Canadian economy added 12,000 jobs in September, but the unemployment rate climbed to its highest level since February 2014 as more people entered the labour force.

OTTAWA — The Canadian economy added 12,000 jobs in September, but the unemployment rate climbed to its highest level since February 2014 as more people entered the labour force.

The gains were entirely to increased part-time work, which added 74,000 jobs, while full-time employment fell by 62,000.

“This month’s Canadian labour force survey saw the bouncing ball land on green, but it was no winner despite a decent headline,” said BMO chief economist Doug Porter, calling the loss in full-time jobs the “biggest clunker.”

However, he noted that it was an “odd” report including the 51,000-plunge in the educational services sector, which contributed to the overall loss of nearly 34,000 jobs in Ontario.

Statistics Canada said the number of people working in the education sector increased, but less than typically observed, resulting in the drop in the seasonally adjusted result.

“The plunge in education employment looks plain weird, and is likely to partly reverse next month,” Porter said.

“Probably the single truest measure in this report is the slow upward grind in the unemployment rate — with the economy only managing to grow about one per cent in real terms over the past year, it’s no shock that the jobless rate is nudging higher.”

The September jobs report was the last major piece of economic data before the federal election on Oct. 19.

The economy has been a major topic on the campaign trail as it has struggled to find a footing after contracting in the first half of the year.

The Bank of Canada has cut its key interest rate twice this year in a bid to help an economy which contracted in the first half of the year due in large part to the drop in oil prices.

In its business outlook survey, also released Friday, the central bank said business sentiment remains tepid as firms’ expectations are diverging as they adjust to weaker commodity prices and a lower Canadian dollar.

The central bank says forward-looking indicators of business activity have improved, supported by a generally positive outlook for the U.S. economy and a weaker loonie.

However, persistent weakness in commodity prices are continuing to work their way through the economy, dampening the outlook for firms tied to the resource sector.

TD Bank economist Diana Petramala said the worst of the economic soft patch is now behind us, but challenges remain.

“For one, we continue to expect a modest pace of hiring due to a lagged impact of past weakness in real GDP growth, with the unemployment rate holding steady relatively lofty at around 7.0 per cent through the next year,” she said.

“Second, the oil sector will continue to be a sore spot for the economy with oil prices remaining low.”

In its September labour force survey, Statistics Canada said the number of self-employed increased by 31,000 in September, while public sector employment fell 29,000. The number of private sector employees climbed by 10,000.

Regionally, British Columbia and Alberta both posted gains of 12,000 jobs, while Manitoba increased by 4,000.

However, Ontario saw a drop of nearly 34,000 jobs in September as losses in full-time employment were partly offset by gains in part-time work. Quebec added 11,000.

For the third quarter, the economy added 31,000 jobs compared with 33,000 in the second quarter and 63,000 in the first three months of the year.

Just Posted

2019 Women of Excellence Awards nominees announced

The nominees were announced in Red Deer Thursday

City watching speed limit debate

Blackfalds, Calgary and Edmonton the latest to consider reduced residential speed limits

Movie shot in Red Deer and Lacombe is nominated for Alberta film award

‘Cor Values’ is up for a Best Feature Rosie

Red Deer developer ordered to replant some of the levelled College Park trees

Some residents don’t believe restoration plans go far enough

Red Deer election forum set for April 11

Presented by Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce

Seniors: Exposing the hype surrounding supplements

Do we need dietary supplements as we age? Do these supplements actually… Continue reading

Eight warning signs you won’t finish college

Forty per cent of students who enrol in a four-year college don’t… Continue reading

Photos: Deer spotted in Red Deer

Spring has sprung. One Advocate reader has been seeing a herd of… Continue reading

Ken Johnston competes in Sheraton Celebrity Dance Off

Sheraton Celebrity Dance Off will be held April 13

Oil field worker to show off his moves on the dance floor

Sheraton Celebrity Dance Off will be held April 13

Radio show host is Sheraton Celebrity dancer in Red Deer

VINNIE TAYLOR You may have heard Vinnie Taylor on the radio in… Continue reading

Dancing dentist of Innisfail

Sheraton Celebrity Dance Off will be held April 13

Business owner prepares for dance debut

Sheraton Celebrity Dance Off will be held April 13

Most Read