Canada posts second month of big job gains, jobless rate dives

Unemployment drops to 6.5 per cent

OTTAWA (Reuters) — Canada unexpectedly added 43,100 new jobs in October and the unemployment rate dropped to a near six-year low of 6.5 per cent from 6.8 per cent in September, Statistics Canada data indicated on Friday.

Analysts had expected a loss of 5,000 jobs after the outsized gain of 74,100 positions in September. The jobless rate was the lowest since the 6.4 percent recorded in November 2008.

The 12-month gain was 181,800 jobs, or one per cent, while the six-month moving average for employment growth was 27,400, up from 15,400 in September. The labour participation rate — of particular interest to the Bank of Canada — stayed at 66 per cent, the lowest since November 2001.

Full-time jobs rose by 26,500 while part-time positions increased by 16,500. The goods-producing sector grew by 19,400 jobs while the services-producing sector added 23,700.

Recent Statscan employment reports have been particularly volatile, prompting some skepticism from market operators.

Canada's sluggish job creation record is one of the reasons that Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz said on Tuesday that interest rates need to remain at near-record lows.

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