Canada’s Labour Market Returns to Pre-Pandemic Employment in September

A strong vaccination uptake coupled with the lifting of restrictions have allowed Canada’s economy to recoup all of the 3 million-some jobs lost during the pandemic.

According to data published by Statistics Canada on Friday, the economy added 157,100 jobs in September, bringing employment levels on par with pre-pandemic levels of February 2020. The latest figures significantly exceed projections by economists polled by Bloomberg, whom called for a labour market increase of 60,000 jobs. This caused the unemployment rate to fall 0.2 percentage points to 6.9% last month.

The majority of the gains were concentrated across full-time work, and across various industries. The labour force participation rate also ticked higher last month to February 2020 levels, rising 0.4 percentage points to 65.5%. Strong vaccinations across the country have allowed the services-producing sector to add 142,000 more jobs in September, exceeding pre-Covid-19 levels for the the first time since the beginning of the pandemic.

However, for the first time since April, employment in the accommodation and food services sector fell by 2.5%, largely due to a significant decline in Ontario. Similarly, there were fewer people working in retail trade, as employment in this sector dropped by 20,000. The labour market also noted gains across six provinces, including Ontario, Quebec, Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and New Brunswick.

The latest labour market figures suggest that Canada’s economy has recovered strongly from the effects of the pandemic, despite a decline in output earlier this year. The report also makes a strong case for the Bank of Canada to begin dialling back its monetary support, as weekly asset purchases are expected to fall to $1 billion come the central bank’s policy meeting later in October.

The Canadian dollar was up to $1.248 per US dollar following the report.

Information for this briefing was found via Statistics Canada. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. 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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