Employment edges down in November: StatsCan

Decline in part-time work partially offset by full-time gains

Following a decrease in October, employment edged down 19,000 in November while the unemployment rate rose by 0.1 percentage points to 7.4 per cent, according to Statistics Canada.

Despite the recent declines, employment was up 1.2 per cent (212,000) from 12 months earlier.

A decline of 53,000 in part-time work was partially offset by an increase of 35,000 in full-time work. Compared with one year earlier, the number of part-time workers was down 1.9 per cent (62,000), while full-time employment grew by two per cent (274,000).

Employment declined in Quebec and Saskatchewan in November, while it increased in Nova Scotia. There was little change in the other provinces.

Over the same period, the total number of hours worked increased at the same rate as total employment (1.2 per cent), according to the Labour Force Survey.

Compared with one year earlier, most of the employment growth was among private sector employees (1.9 per cent), as employment was little changed among public sector employees, up 0.4 per cent, and the self-employed, down 0.3 per cent.

Losses in services partly offset by increases in goods sector

Employment in the service sector declined in November, with decreases in retail and wholesale trade (34,000) as well as in business, building and other support services (29,000). At the same time, there were employment gains of 36,000 in "other services" such as personal services and repair and maintenance.

Despite the decline in November, employment in the service sector rose by 1.3 per cent over the past 12 months, with steady increases in accommodation and food services (6.5 per cent) as well as professional, scientific and technical services (5.1 per cent).

In November, there were more workers in the goods sector, with gains in construction (20,000), natural resources (10,000) and utilities (8,000).

In the 12 months to November, employment in the goods sector increased 0.8 per cent. Over the period, there was notable growth in natural resources (8.3 per cent) and construction (2.2 per cent). In manufacturing, employment was slightly below its level of 12 months earlier (0.8 per cent), said StatsCan.

Employment declines in Quebec and Saskatchewan

Employment in Quebec fell by 31,000 in November, pushing the unemployment rate up 0.3 percentage points to eight per cent. The bulk of the decline was in wholesale and retail trade. This month's decrease leaves employment in the province at about the same level as November 2010.

The only other province with a notable employment decrease in November was Saskatchewan (4,200). This pushed the unemployment rate in the province up by a full percentage point to 5.1 per cent. With this month's decline, employment in Saskatchewan was similar to its level one year earlier.

In November, employment increased by 4,400 in Nova Scotia. Despite this increase, the unemployment rate in the province was unchanged at 8.6 per cent, as more people were participating in the labour market, said the Labour Force Survey.

Following a large decline in October, employment in Ontario edged up by 17,000 in November. At the same time, the unemployment rate declined 0.2 percentage points to 7.9 per cent. Over the past 12 months, employment in the province has grown by 1.5 per cent (97,000), slightly higher than the national average of 1.2 per cent.

Employment in Alberta edged up in November, and the unemployment rate was five per cent. Compared with November 2010, employment grew faster in Alberta than in any other province, at 4.8 per cent.

Employment declines among core-aged men and youths

In November, employment declined by 20,000 among core-aged men (25 to 54), leaving employment for this group slightly above its level of 12 months earlier (0.5 per cent). Among core-aged women, while little changed in November, employment grew 1.3 per cent over the past 12 months.

Employment also fell in November among youths aged 15 to 24 (18,000). Compared with one year earlier, however, youth employment was up 1.3 per cent.

There were more women aged 55 and over working in November (20,000), bringing total growth for this group to 2.1 per cent over the past 12 months. For men in the same age group, despite little change in November, employment increased by 2.9 per cent over the past 12 months, said StatsCan.

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