Canada’s Employment Levels Continue Trending Upward in August

August 2023 saw an employment boost of 40,000, a 0.2% increase from July’s numbers. This uplift continues a positive trend observed since the beginning of the year, bringing the total employment rise to 174,000, or an average monthly hike of 25,000 jobs.

However, an interesting factor that has added a layer of complexity to these statistics is the significant surge in the population. The question arises: is employment growth keeping up with the pace of the expanding population? One of the key metrics used to measure this is the employment rate, which highlights the percentage of the population aged 15 and above that is currently employed.

In August, the employment rate experienced a slight drop, falling to 61.9%. This indicates that even though there are more jobs, they might not be enough to cater to the growing number of individuals entering the job market. To put things into perspective, the labor force’s population increased by 103,000 in August, averaging an 81,000 rise per month since 2023’s onset. Given this rapid population growth, it’s estimated that to keep the employment rate steady, around 50,000 new jobs are needed monthly.

Amidst these overarching numbers, the unemployment rate remained relatively unchanged at 5.5% for August. However, delving deeper into the numbers paints a broader picture: the total count of unemployed individuals was 1.2 million, witnessing a rise of 123,000 since April.

Sectors like professional, scientific, and technical services, as well as construction, emerged as the month’s leading employers, adding 52,000 and 34,000 jobs, respectively. In contrast, educational services and manufacturing sectors saw a decrease in employment by 44,000 and 30,000. Regionally, Alberta, British Columbia, and Prince Edward Island enjoyed an employment upswing, while Nova Scotia saw a decline.

Notably, hourly wages on a year-to-year basis exhibited an upward trend, with the average hourly wage for August standing at $33.47, marking a 4.9% increase.

Information for this story was found via Statistics Canada. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses

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