26,000 Canadian jobs lost in December
The unemployment rate in Canada increased by 0.1 per cent to 7.5 over the month of December.
Although there was an increase of 18,000 part-time jobs over the month, according to Statistics Canada, the unemployment rate still increased with more people looking for jobs in December than in November.
2011 started strong with the first six months showing significant job gains (around 199,000) but the following six months saw very little job creation. Compare that number to 2010, where the Canadian economy created 298,000 jobs.
Job gains concentrated among older workers
Toronto-Dominion Bank economist Francis Fong noted: “As has been the case throughout this recession and recovery, the job gains have been concentrated decidedly among older workers. Those aged 55 years and over recorded gains of 24,000 in December, while positions open to those aged 15-24 fell by 16,800. The unemployment rate for younger workers remained steady at 14.1 per cent, almost double the national average. However, neither the gain nor the underlying details would suggest any reversal of fortune for the Canadian economy.”
From October through November, 73,000 jobs were lost.
All job gains in December were in the weaker categories of part-time and self-employment. Full-time work dropped by 25,500 jobs, and the number of employed people in the country dropped by 13,600.
The loss of jobs was offset by the gain of 43,100 part-time jobs and 31,100 in self-employment.
Oddly enough, every province in Canada saw a slight increase in employment, except in Quebec where big losses in construction, social assistance and health care contributed to a loss of 25,700 jobs. About half the new jobs created last year were in Alberta, which has the lowest unemployment rate in the country at 4.9 percent.
The biggest increase in jobs over December was in manufacturing, which saw an increase of 30,400 workers while construction saw a decrease of 12,000.
For the year as a whole, the factory sector saw the largest drop – losing 50,000 jobs – while the service industry created the majority of new jobs in 2011.