September’s unemployment rate falls to 5.2% as fewer Canadians look for work

Article content

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says the Canadian economy saw a modest gain of 21,000 jobs in September.

Article content

In the federal agency’s latest labor force survey released Friday, the unemployment rate for September fell to 5.2 percent as fewer people looked for work, down from 5.4 percent the previous month.

Article content

The rise in employment was expected as job losses in the education sector over the summer were reversed as schools reopened.

The report said gains in education, health and social assistance were offset by losses in several other sectors, including manufacturing and information, culture and recreation.

Canada’s labor force participation rate — the percentage of people who want and are looking for work — edged down 0.1 per cent in September.

The increase in employment comes after three consecutive months of job losses in the Canadian economy.

Article content

As the Bank of Canada aggressively raises interest rates to tame high inflation, the Canadian economy is expected to feel the effects of higher interest rates on both its economic growth and employment.

The central bank suggested that tight labor markets were partly to blame for high inflation.

Wages rose 5.2 percent in September from a year earlier, with the average hourly wage at $31.67. This marked the fourth consecutive month of 5% or higher wage growth.

The report also looked at retirement among Canadians under the age of 65, one key factor in the apparent worker shortage. Nearly one million Canadians between the ages of 55 and 64 said they retired in September.

The labor force participation rate has fallen steadily over the past 20 years, largely due to an aging population.

Article content

The federal agency says that since September 2019, the number of Canadians aged 65 and over grew by 11.6 per cent, while the working-age population grew by 3.5 per cent.

As children head back to school in September, the report also examines the effect of childcare responsibilities on career decisions. Despite record employment levels, women aged 25 to 54 with children under 16 were twice as likely to decide not to apply for a job or promotion in the past year than their male counterparts.

Women are also twice as likely as men to report helping their children with homework and home schooling most or all of the time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *