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Labour market sluggish in August: StatsCan

Published by Brad Fougere on September 05, 2014

Labour markets continue to be sluggish all across Canada as employment levels were essentially unchanged for the month of August – down 11,000 jobs compared to the revised levels posted for July. This trend was remarkably consistent across Canada as most provinces saw no job growth at all or small losses. Alberta posted the weakest performance with a 0.6 per cent decrease in employment for the month, while New Brunswick and Nova Scotia were the only provinces to post appreciable gains; employment rose by about 1 per cent in each province.

For the year to date, employment is up just 0.5 per cent compared to the first eight months of 2013. The unemployment rate in August remained unchanged at 7.0 per cent.

Things were little different in the manufacturing sector. Despite pockets of strength, the sector lost the same number of jobs as the economy as a whole in August. After starting the year relatively strongly, the manufacturing sector has seen job losses in five of the last six months.


The decline in manufacturing jobs in August was largely concentrated in Quebec. The province lost 19,500 manufacturing jobs in August, wiping out the previous month’s gains. Manufacturing employment was down in Ontario as well (5,800 positions), marking the fourth consecutive month of job losses. Those losses were offset in part by gains in New Brunswick, Manitoba and Alberta.


Even while manufacturing continues to struggle in some parts of Canada, pockets of strength are emerging as well. For the year to date, there have been strong employment gains in manufacturing in southwest Quebec as well as the region around Quebec City. The Lower Mainland in BC and the Calgary region have also posted strong growth in manufacturing employment so far in 2014.


Found in: Stats Canada

National Office

Alberta British Columbia
Manitoba New Brunswick
Newfoundland & Labrador Nova Scotia
Ontario Québec
Prince Edward Island Saskatchewan