Month-over-month unemployment drops in Kamloops


This forced the unemployment rate to tick up 0.1 percentage points to 5.9, according to Statistics Canada monthly data dump on Friday. The unemployment rate in Alberta also fell by 1.7 percent, to 7.0 percent.

Economists look at the number of jobs in a community rather than the unemployment in determining an area's economic health.

A chart showing unemployment rates by province for January 2018. In Ontario, 51,000 jobs were lost followed by Quebec which saw a decline of 17,000 jobs. That put about 500 people temporarily out of work, although some of those have since been recalled.

The nation's economy shed the most jobs at 88,000 since 2009 in January following two months of gains.

The drop nationally cools off Canada's strongest pace of growth since 2002 after creating more than 400,000 jobs in 2017.

In Ontario the jobless rate fell to 5.5 per cent from 5.6 per cent in December.

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The number was influenced by a drop of 137,000 part-time positions, the largest single-month slump on record. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in the province rose by 46,000, entirely due to increases in full-time work. "Even prior to this week's financial market gyrations and this weak jobs data, we were of the view that the [Bank of Canada] would wait until the second half of the year before hiking [interest rates] again - these developments only embolden that view", Porter wrote in a commentary.

Still, despite the job loss of part-time jobs, Ontario's unemployment rate remained at 5.5 per cent in January as fewer people were participating in the labour market.

"A mysterious mix of good and bad, with the latter's impact blunted by how strong job gains were in the lead up to these figures", Avery Shenfeld, chief economist at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, said in a note to investors.

The Canadian dollar weakened against the greenback following the report before reversing to trade modestly firmer.

To partially offset the declines, Statistics Canada said the economy added 49,000 full-time positions last month.

BMO chief economist Douglas Porter noted it was the first setback for jobs in Canada's job market in 16 months and Ontario was especially hard hit.