October job losses push unemployment rate up

Small gains in full-time jobs couldn't offset 60,000 lost part-time jobs

Following two months of moderate job gains, the Canadian economy shed 43,000 net jobs in October, all in part time, according to Statistics Canada. This drop pushed the unemployment rate up 0.2 percentage points to 8.6 per cent.

Part-time work dropped by 60,000 in October, the second consecutive month of large declines. At the same time, full-time employment increased slightly, adding to the large full-time gain from the previous month.

Most of October's employment decline came from retail and wholesale trade (31,000), "other services" (20,000) and natural resources (11,000). These losses were partially offset by gains in transportation and warehousing (22,000 new jobs).

Declines in the number of private (45,000 job losses) and public (26,000 job losses) sector employees in October were partially offset by gains in self-employment (28,000).

Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Newfoundland and Labrador experienced notable employment losses in October.

Employment in Alberta fell by 15,000, pushing the unemployment rate up 0.4 percentage points to 7.5 per cent.

British Columbia saw 13,000 job losses in October, which pushed the unemployment rate to 8.3 per cent. And Newfoundland and Labrador saw 4,000 job losses, all in full time. That province's unemployment rate is now at 17 per cent.

Manitoba also saw 3,400 job losses, bringing the unemployment rate up 0.5 percentage points to 5.8 per cent.

In all other provinces, employment was little changed. Since October 2008, Alberta, Ontario and Newfoundland and Labrador were the only provinces with faster rates of employment decline than the national average.

Adult women aged 25 and over and youths aged 15 to 24 accounted for all of the employment decline in October, with 24,000 and 20,000 job losses respectively.

However, average hourly wages were up 3.3 per cent in October compared with October 2008.

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