The number of employees receiving pay or benefits from their employer rose by 91,400 (+0.5 per cent) in December, bringing cumulative gains since September to 240,600 (+1.4 per cent). Gains in December were largest in Ontario (36,900; +0.5 per cent), Quebec (+18,900; +0.5 per cent), Alberta (+12,700; +0.6 per cent) and British Columbia (11,500; +0.5 per cent), reported Statistics Canada on Thursday.
“Payroll employment in the services-producing sector increased by 72,400 (+0.5 per cent) in December. Gains were recorded in eight of the 15 sectors, led by healthcare and social assistance (+26,500; +1.2 per cent) and finance and insurance (+13,800; +1.7 per cent), which together accounted for more than half of the increase in the services-producing sector. Employment in wholesale trade (-3,600; -0.4 per cent) and information and cultural industries (-1,600; -0.4 per cent) declined in December, while the remaining five sectors showed little change,” said the federal agency.
“Meanwhile, payroll employment in the goods-producing sector increased by 13,600 (+0.4 per cent) in December, with construction (+11,500; +1.0 per cent) accounting for most of the increase.”
On a year-over-year basis, average weekly earnings grew 3.4 per cent to $1,174 in December, down from a year-over-year growth of 4.0 per cent recorded in November, said StatsCan. Newfoundland and Labrador (+6.7 per cent, to $1,177) recorded the largest proportional gain in average weekly earnings in December, followed by New Brunswick (+4.6 per cent, to $1,078) and Quebec (+4.5 per cent to $1,130). Meanwhile, Alberta (+2.2 per cent, to $1,268) and British Columbia (+1.6 per cent, to $1,153) tempered the overall year-over-year growth, it said.
“In December, overall job vacancies (848,800) were little changed from November (849,200), levelling off after trending downward from the peak reached in May 2022 (1,002,200).
“The job vacancy rate, which corresponds to the number of vacant positions as a proportion of total labour demand (the sum of filled and vacant positions), was 4.8 per cent in December, unchanged compared with November but down from the record high of 5.7 per cent observed from March to May 2022. The decrease in the job vacancy rate from May to December was the result of a fall in vacancies (-153,400; -15.3 per cent) combined with a rise in payroll employment (+267,000; +1.6 per cent),” said the report.
“There were 1.2 unemployed persons for every job vacancy in December 2022, down slightly from 1.3 in November, but up from the low of 1.0 in June. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the unemployment-to-job vacancy ratio ranged between 1.9 and 3.1.”
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