Job vacancy rate higher than average

Local employers might cringe when they hear the unemployment rate for the Red Deer region — a rock-bottom 3.3 per cent in November. But it’s probably this area’s job vacancy rate that they can relate to most painfully. At 4.8 per cent, according to a Canadian Federation of Independent Business report issued on Tuesday, the figure — which represents the percentage of private sector jobs sitting unfilled — is more than two percentage points higher than the national average. “Alberta’s private sector job vacancy rate remains the highest in the country and has been on a slow, steady climb,” said Richard Truscott, the CFIB’s Alberta director.

Local employers might cringe when they hear the unemployment rate for the Red Deer region — a rock-bottom 3.3 per cent in November.

But it’s probably this area’s job vacancy rate that they can relate to most painfully. At 4.8 per cent, according to a Canadian Federation of Independent Business report issued on Tuesday, the figure — which represents the percentage of private sector jobs sitting unfilled — is more than two percentage points higher than the national average.

“Alberta’s private sector job vacancy rate remains the highest in the country and has been on a slow, steady climb,” said Richard Truscott, the CFIB’s Alberta director.

Job vacancy rates for communities across Canada were calculated by the federation during the third quarter of 2014. Vacancies were defined as job openings that had gone unfilled for at least four months because employers couldn’t find suitable workers.

“As the unemployment rate goes down, the job vacancy rate goes up,” explained Ted Mallett, CFIB’s chief economist and vice-president. “A tightening labour market means that employers have a harder time finding the qualified employees they need; especially small businesses.

“Generally, businesses with fewer than 20 employees are reporting vacancy rates more than double that of businesses employing 50 or more.”

The private sector job vacancy rate for Alberta communities included in the CFIB report ranged from highs of 5.7 per cent in the case of Lloydminster and 6.4 per cent for Wainwright, to 3.7 per cent and 2.7 per cent for Edmonton and Calgary respectively. Bigger cities tend to have a larger share of their employment in large enterprises, noted the report, which tend to show smaller vacancy rates.

At 3.9 per cent, the private sector job vacancy rate average for Alberta was the highest in Canada. Saskatchewan was next at 3.7 per cent, followed by British Columbian (3.0 per cent) , Manitoba (2.8 per cent), Newfoundland and Labrador (2.7 per cent), Quebec (2.4 per cent), Ontario (2.3 per cent), Prince Edward Island (2.1 per cent), New Brunswick (2.1 per cent) and Nova Scotia (1.9 per cent).

The national rate of 2.7 per cent, which was adjusted to allow for seasonal variations, equated to 322,200 full-time, part-time and temporary positions, said the report. The Canadian figure has been climbing since the height of the recession in 2008, when it was 1.7 per cent.

Since the previous quarter in 2014, the Canadian rate has moved up a 10th of a percentage point, or 7,000 positions.

That’s the largest quarterly increase in the past two years.

Just Posted

WATCH: Red Deer’s noxious weeds are a goat’s dietary delight

Piper Creek Community Garden gets chemical-free weed control

Get your guilty pleasures: Westerner Days food

Traditional sugary treats were served up by the plate, bowl and bucket… Continue reading

Centrefest brings feats of daring to Red Deer’s downtown

Fundraising was a tough slog, but it came together in the end

Count shows slight decrease in Red Deer’s homeless

In two years, the number of homeless in Red Deer has decreased… Continue reading

Redoing hip surgeries are costly, says new study

Redoing hip and knee replacements costs Canada’s health system $130 million a… Continue reading

WATCH: Cirque ZUMA ZUMA puts on a show at Westerner Days

ZUMA ZUMA performs three times a day during Westerner Days

Jones’ punt return TD rallies Riders to road victory over Ticats

Roughriders 31 Tiger-Cats 20 HAMILTON — Brandon Bridge kept Dave Watford on… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Red Deer’s Iron Buffalo rocks Westerner Days

Iron Buffalo opened for Helix and Lee Aaron Thursday at the ENMAX Centrium

Zuckerberg’s Holocaust comment puts Facebook on the spot

NEW YORK — Denying the Holocaust happened is probably OK on Facebook.… Continue reading

Brazilian police arrest ‘Dr. Bumbum’ after patient dies

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazilian police have arrested celebrated plastic surgeon Denis… Continue reading

Canadian marijuana company Tilray has first US pot IPO

SEATTLE — A Canadian company is the first marijuana business to complete… Continue reading

Dolphins anthem punishment includes suspensions

Miami Dolphins players who protest on the field during the national anthem… Continue reading

Soy “milk” makers may need to find alternative description

NEW YORK — Soy and almond drinks that bill themselves as “milk”… Continue reading

Calgary woman convicted in son’s strep death granted day parole

CALGARY — A woman whose son died after she failed to take… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month