Last Updated on November 6, 2020

Canada saw its unemployment rate edge down as it added 83,600 jobs in October, despite many provinces reimposing restrictions due to the second wave of COVID-19.

The Canada jobs Labour Force Survey showed the unemployment rate fell 0.1 percentage points to 8.9 per cent compared to September.

Of the employment increase, the majority was in full-time work, where 69,000 jobs were added. Self-employment grew by 33,000, while the number of people working from home increased by 150,000.

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Demographically, women aged 25 to 54 saw the biggest employment gains, adding 40,000 jobs for an unemployment rate of 6.6 per cent.

For men in the same age group, employment increased by 25,000, while the unemployment rate remained at 7.6 per cent.

For young people, age 15 to 24, a gain of 16,000 among men was cancelled out by a loss of 14,000 jobs for women.

What Are The Labour Force Survey Highlights?

Unemployment rate (%) 8.9
Employment rate (%) 59.4
Labour force participation rate (%) 65.2
Number unemployed 1,816,800
Number working 18,553,500
Youth (15-24) unemployment rate (%) 18.8
Men (over 25) unemployment rate (%) 7.8
Women (over 25) unemployment rate (%) 6.8

Source: Statistics Canada

Provincial Canada Jobs Picture

Employment increased in five provinces: British Columbia, Ontario, Alberta, Newfoundland & Labrador, and Prince Edward Island.

Employment was closest to pre-coronavirus February levels in Newfoundland (-0.5%), Manitoba (-2.1%) and New Brunswick (-2.3%).

British Columbia saw employment grow by 34,000 jobs, an increase of 1.4 per cent, while unemployment dropped by 0.4 percentage points to 8 per cent,

In Ontario, employment increased by 31,000, or 0.4 per cent, with an unemployment rate of 9.6 per cent in Canada’s most populous province.

Unemployment Rates In Canada’s Provinces

Jobs change in last month Unemployment rate (%)
British Columbia 33,500 8.0
Alberta 23,400 10.7
Saskatchewan -1,600 6.4
Manitoba -1,900 7.1
Ontario 30,600 9.6
Quebec -12,900 7.7
New Brunswick 2,600 10.1
Nova Scotia 2,800 8.7
Prince Edward Island 900 10.0
Newfoundland & Labrador 5,900 12.8
CANADA 83,600 8.9

Source: Statistics Canada

Alberta added 23,000 jobs in October, a gain of 1.1 per cent, with unemployment of 10.7 per cent. Calgary has now seen four consecutive months of gains totalling 101,000, or 13.6 per cent.

Quebec, meanwhile, was one of those provinces to lose jobs in October. With second wave restrictions in place in many regions, including Montreal and Quebec City, the French-speaking province lose 12,900 jobs, while unemployment edged up to 7.7 per cent. 

The jobs loss was spearheaded by 42,000 reductions in employment in the province’s accommodation and food services industry.

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