419,000 jobs added in July, but 80 per cent part time

3 million more people than usual still working from home: StatCan

419,000 jobs added in July, but 80 per cent part time
Most of the employment gains in July were in part-time work, which increased by 345,000 (11.3 per cent), says Statistics Canada.

Employment rose by 419,000 (2.4 per cent) in July, compared with 953,000 (5.8 per cent) in June. Combined with gains of 290,000 in May, this brought employment to within 1.3 million of its pre-COVID February level.

July’s numbers are much lower than those of June, when almost one million jobs were added.

The number of Canadians who were employed but worked less than half their usual hours for reasons likely related to COVID-19 dropped by 412,000 (18.8 per cent) in July. Combined with declines recorded in May and June, this left COVID-related absences from work at just under one million (972,000 or 120.3 per cent) above February levels, says Statistics Canada.

The unemployment rate was 10.9 per cent in July, falling 1.4 percentage points for the second consecutive month and down from a record high of 13.7 per cent in May. The unemployment rate was 5.6 per cent in February.

Highlights for July:

Part-time work: Most of the employment gains in July were in part-time work, which increased by 345,000 (11.3 per cent), compared with a much smaller increase of 73,000 (0.5 per cent) in full-time work.

Men/women: In July, employment rose faster among women (3.4 per cent or 275,000) than men (1.5 per cent or 144,000). Due to heavier employment losses among women in March, however, employment in July was closer to its pre-shutdown level for men than for women.

Temporary layoffs: In July, temporary layoffs declined strongly for a second consecutive month, down 384,000 (45.5 per cent). Among those on temporary layoff in June, about half became employed in July, either returning to their old job or starting a new one (not seasonally adjusted). Despite the sharp declines in June and July, the number of people on temporary layoff (460,000) was more than four times higher than it was in February.

Work from home: Among those who were employed and not absent from work, the number working from home dropped by 400,000, compared with an increase of 300,000 in the number working at locations other than home. Despite this decline, the number of Canadians who worked from home in July (4.6 million) remained significantly higher than the number who usually do so (1.6 million).

Return to work: In July, the vast majority (85.8 per cent) of Canadians who had adjusted to COVID-19 by starting to work from home expected that they would continue to do so for the following four weeks. When asked to consider challenges related to eventually returning to their usual work location, more than half (54.5 per cent) were concerned about contracting COVID-19 in the workplace, while nearly half (48.5 per cent) worried about infecting a family member. Just under one-third (31.9 per cent) had concerns about using public transit.

Population groups: The national unemployment rate for those aged 15 to 69 was 11.3 per cent in July. Several groups had rates of joblessness significantly above this average, including South Asian (17.8 per cent), Arab (17.3 per cent), and Black (16.8 per cent) Canadians. Among South Asian Canadians, women (20.4 per cent) had a significantly higher unemployment rate than men (15.4 per cent). Black women also had a higher unemployment rate than Black men (18.6 per cent vs 15.1 per cent).

More details on the July numbers from Statistics Canada can be found here.

A survey in May found that nearly one-third of workers plan to look for a new job after the pandemic.

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