Ottawa - The Help-wanted index compiled by the Conference Board of Canada fell 9.5 percentage points in June 2013, bringing it to 128.7. With domestic demand expected to slow this year due to a cooling housing market, soft consumer spending, and slower public and private investment, employers are likely to be cautious about their near-term hiring.
Including June’s drop, the recent trend in the index suggests that employment gains will be moderate in the coming months. In fact, based on the index, the labour market is expected to see a decline of 10,000 jobs in July.
All provincial indexes, with the exception of New Brunswick’s, posted declines in June. And while New Brunswick saw its index increase by 1.2 points, this gain was far from being enough to offset the declines of the two previous months.
Newfoundland and Labrador’s index posted the largest drop, falling 13.6 points. It was the third monthly decline for the province this year — and also its largest.
Elsewhere in Atlantic Canada, Prince Edward Island’s index fell 9.4 points in June and Nova Scotia’s index dropped 1.1 points. It was the third consecutive month of decline for both provinces.
In Central Canada, Ontario’s index was down 13 points. While this is a significant decline, it was not enough to completely offset the strong gain recorded the previous month. Quebec’s index fell by just 0.5 points. Still, it was the fourth decline this year.
In Western Canada, British Columbia’s index dropped 10.9 points, clawing back about a third of the increase registered in May. Similarly, Saskatchewan’s index fell 10 points, eliminating half of the gain recorded in May. Alberta’s index declined 8.9 points, continuing a downward trend that started earlier this year. And Manitoba saw its index fall 4.2 points — a third consecutive month of decline.