Red Deer’s unemployment rate has gone up for the third straight month.
In November the region’s unemployment rate, unadjusted for seasonality, was 7.9 per cent, which is up from 7.4 per cent the month prior. The unemployment rate in November 2022 was 6.4 per cent.
The labour force fell by 1,600 this past month, with full-time employment falling by 3,000 and part-time employment rising by 1,000. Red Deer’s participation rate was 63.8 per cent, which is a percentage point lower than October, and the employment rate was 58.8 per cent, which was down 1.2 percentage points.
The Red Deer area has the highest unemployment rate among all Alberta regions: 5.8 per cent in Edmonton, 5.4 per cent in Calgary, 5 per cent in Wood Buffalo-Cold Lake, 4.4 per cent in Banff-Jasper-Rocky Mountain House and Athabasca-Grande Prairie-Peace River, 4.3 per cent in Lethbridge-Medicine Hat, and 2.5 per cent in Camrose-Drumheller. Camrose-Drumheller has a lower participation rate and employment rate than the Red Deer region.
Alberta’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 5.9 per cent in November 2023, up 0.1 percentage points from the previous month and up 0.2 percentage points from the same month last year.
Alberta’s unemployment rate was the fifth lowest in Canada. The national unemployment rate at 5.8 per cent was 0.1 percentage points higher than the previous month.
In November 2023, employment rose in seven out of 16 industries compared to the previous month. The industries with the most employment gains were: construction; public administration; and health care and social assistance.
“Our province’s economy has momentum as it continues to create good-paying jobs, attract world-class investment and generate quality opportunities for Albertans,” said Matt Jones, minister of jobs, economy and trade.
“Employment in Alberta is on the rise yet again with nearly 8,900 more people working in the province in November, driven by full-time job growth. Most of these gains came from the goods-producing sectors.”
In November 2023, the labour force increased by 14,400 to 2,653,500. The number of labour force participants increased among 15 to 24 year olds by 12,000 and people aged 55 years and over by 13,800, and decreased for 25 to 54 year olds by 11,500.
Nathan Ip, Alberta NDP critic for jobs, economy and trade, issued a statement regarding the November job numbers.
“With climbing unemployment and inflation continuing to outpace wages, the UCP are ignoring these issues by creating massive amounts of economic uncertainty by banning renewable energy development and planning to gamble away retirement security,” said Ip.
“The UCP needs to come up with an actual plan to help Albertans find good-paying jobs, and pay their bills.”