Ottawa – Following a decline the previous month, employment was little changed in April 2013 and the unemployment rate remained at 7.2%, according to the latest Labour Force Survey from Statistics Canada.
Compared with 12 months earlier, employment increased 0.9% or 163,000, all in full time. The total number of hours worked rose by 1.5% over the same period.
Provincially, employment grew in Alberta, while it fell in Manitoba, New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador.
In April, there were employment gains in manufacturing and public administration. These gains were offset by losses in transportation and warehousing; ‘other services’; and business, building and other support services.
There were 34,000 more people working in the public sector in April, while there was little change in the number of private sector employees and the self-employed.
Over the previous 12 months, public sector employment increased 2.6% or 94,000, while growth in self-employment was 2.2% (+59,000), the bulk of which was in the first quarter of 2013. The number of private sector employees was little changed compared with 12 months earlier, as gains in the second half of 2012 were offset by losses in 2013.
Employment in April increased among people aged 25 to 54 and declined among youths. For people aged 55 and over, employment was little changed.
Employment up in Alberta
Employment in Alberta increased by 15,000 in April, offsetting the loss in the previous month and pushing the unemployment rate down 0.4 percentage points to 4.4%. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in Alberta grew by 1.9%.
In Manitoba, employment declined by 11,000 in April, pushing the unemployment rate up 0.8 percentage points to 5.8%. With this decline, employment returned to a level similar to that of 12 months earlier.
Employment in New Brunswick fell by 3,200 and the unemployment rate was 10.9%. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in the province was little changed.
Following three months of little change, employment in Newfoundland and Labrador declined by 3,000 in April and the unemployment rate was 12.4%. This decline brought employment back to its level of 12 months earlier.
Employment in Ontario was little changed in April, and the unemployment rate remained at 7.7%. On a year-over-year basis, employment growth in this province was 1.0%, with the bulk of the gains in the fall of 2012.
Following a decline in March, employment in Quebec was little changed in April and the unemployment rate was 7.8%. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in the province rose 1.1%, with most of the growth from August to November 2012.
Employment in manufacturing increased by 21,000 in April, the first monthly gain following a downward trend that began in June 2012. Employment in this industry was down 2.9% or 52,000 from 12 months earlier.
In April, the number of employees in public administration grew by 13,000. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in this industry was up 2.6% or 25,000, all in provincial and local public administration.
There were 21,000 fewer people working in transportation and warehousing, bringing employment in this industry back to its level of 12 months earlier.
Employment in ‘other services’, such as repair and maintenance or personal and household services, continued its year-long downward trend, declining by 19,000 in April. On a year-over-year basis, total employment has fallen by 7.3% in this industry.
The number of workers in business, building and other support services decreased by 16,000 in April, bringing employment back to a level similar to that of 12 months earlier.
Employment increases among people aged 25 to 54
In April, there were 31,000 more people aged 25 to 54 working, mostly men. With this gain, the unemployment rate for this age group fell 0.3 percentage points to 5.8%. On a year-over-year basis, total employment gains were 69,000 (+0.6%).
Among youths aged 15 to 24, employment declined by 19,000 in April, and the unemployment rate was 14.5%. Compared with 12 months earlier, youth employment was little changed.
Employment among people aged 55 and over was little changed in April. However, with more people in this age group searching for work, the unemployment rate rose 0.3 percentage points to 6.1%. Over the 12 months to April, employment for this group was up 111,000 (+3.5%), primarily a result of population ageing.