Canada

Canada’s unemployment rate nudged up again to hit 5.8 per cent in November even though 25,000 more people landed jobs as Canadian population growth continued to outstrip any increases in employment.

The latest rise in the unemployment rate brings the total increase since April this year to 0.8 per cent. 

Although the unemployment rate has trended up for all major age groups, increases have been more pronounced among youth,” reveals Statistics Canada. 

“From April to November, the unemployment rate increased by two percentage points, to 11.6 per cent, among youth aged 15 to 24. Over the same period, it increased by 0.6 percentage points among people aged 25 to 54, to 4.9 per cent, and by 0.7 percentage points among people aged 55 and older, to 4.6 per cent.”

The tougher times for workers this year are reflected in the growth of the number of people laid off from a previous job in 2023 compared to last year, the November Labour Force Survey reveals.


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“Of those who were unemployed in November and had worked in the previous year, more than two-thirds, 68.7 per cent, had been laid off from their previous job, compared with 62.6 per cent in November 2022,” notes Canada’s Statistical and Demographic Services Agency.

Immigrants, who are playing an increasingly important role in Canada’s labour market, unfortunately, continue to face barriers when trying to integrate into the workforce, including those with post-secondary credentials or work experience acquired abroad.

“Among recent immigrants (those who had arrived in Canada in the previous five years) who had work experience or post-secondary credentials from abroad, nearly six in 10, or 58.2 per cent, had faced difficulties finding work related to their foreign work experience or credentials in the past two years,” reveals Statistics Canada. 

“In comparison, fewer than half, or 47.6 per cent, of those who had arrived from five to 10 years earlier had faced such difficulties.

“The most common difficulties encountered by recent immigrants with credentials or experience were not having enough Canadian job experience, at 22.7 per cent, having no connections in the job market, at 20.3 per cent, and lacking enough references from Canada, at 18.5 per cent.”

Manufacturing And Construction Sectors Hired More Workers In November

Across the Canadian economy, the manufacturing sector employed an additional 28,000 people in November and the construction sector added 16,000.

But wholesale and retail trade shed 27,000 workers and the finance, insurance, real estate, rental and leasing sector dropped 18,000 people from its workforce.

“Employment increased in New Brunswick by 2,400 or 0.6 per cent and declined in Prince Edward Island by 1,300 or 1.4 per cent (while) employment was little changed in all other provinces,” reports Statistics Canada.


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Total hours worked fell 0.7 per cent in November but were still up 1.3 per cent on a year-over-year basis.

“On a year-over-year basis, average hourly wages rose 4.8 per cent, up $1.57 to $34.28, in November, similar to the increase recorded in October,” notes Statistics Canada.

The employment rate has decreased in four of the past five months and has generally trended down since January when it reached a recent high of 62.5 per cent.

Private Sector Jobs Are Up, Public Sector Growth Is Flat

“The number of private sector employees rose by 38,000 or 0.3 per cent in November, the first increase since June,” notes Statistics Canada.

“Meanwhile, the number of self-employed workers decreased by 25,000, down 0.9 per cent, partly offsetting cumulative increases of 76,000, or 2.9 per cent in August and September. The number of public sector employees was little changed in November.”

Canadian employers hoping to attract workers through economic immigration can recruit them through the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) and the International Mobility Program (IMP).

The Global Talent Stream (GTS), a part of the TFWP, can under normal processing situations lead to the granting of Canadian work permits and the processing of visa applications within two weeks.

Employers can also bring in foreign nationals to fill available positions through the Express Entry system, which receives immigration applications online.

It powers the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSW), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FST), and Canada Experience Class Program (CEC) which all draw from the Express Entry pool of candidates. Those with the required Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) scores are then sent Invitations to Apply (ITAs) in regular draws.

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