Education sector toughest job market: StatsCan

248,000 job vacancies in July to September 2011
||Last Updated: 01/25/2012

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Unemployed workers in Canada's educational services sector faced the toughest job market in the country in the July-September period, according to a Statistics Canada report.

For every 10 unemployed workers in education, there was just one vacancy, according to the agency's new data on job vacancies in the three-month period. The second worst sector was construction where the ratio was 5.1.

The long-term employment growth trend in mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction is reflected in overall labour demand. In September, this sector reported the highest vacancy rate, at four per cent, more than twice the rate of all sectors combined and accounting for nearly 9,000 vacancies in this sector, said the report.

The data is not seasonally adjusted to account for layoffs during the summer months but Statscan said the ratio had been high in the education sector for earlier months of 2011 as well.

Of the 10 largest industrial sectors, wholesale trade and health care and social assistance had the lowest ratio, meaning there were fewer job hunters competing for each position. The highest rate of job vacancy was in administrative and support services (2.6 per cent, with 20,000 vacancies), followed closely by professional, scientific and technical services (2.5 per cent, with 20,000 vacancies).

Canadian businesses had, on average, 248,000 job vacancies in the period with an average ratio of unemployment to vacancies of 3.3.

The national vacancy rate, defined as the number of vacant positions divided by labour demand, was 1.7 per cent. The highest vacancy rates were in Saskatchewan and Alberta (both 2.6 per cent) while Prince Edward Island (1.2 per cent) had the lowest vacancy rate.

Because Statscan released the job vacancy data for the first time, using a three-month average, there was no historical comparison available.

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