Alberta's unemployment rate increased 50% in 2015

Dec 19 2017, 2:57 am

Alberta’s struggling economy has caused the unemployment rate to increase 51.3% over the last 12 months.

Statistics Canada reports some 58,000 people were unemployed in Alberta last year, including 14,600 people who lost their jobs and 44,000 people lost a full-time job. The rate was slightly offset by the 29,500 people who gained part-time employment.

The numbers mark the highest unemployment rate in the province since April 2010, going from 4.7% to 7.0% in one year.

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On the other hand, B.C.’s growth was much stronger than other provinces like Ontario and Quebec, which only grew 1.2%.

But no province did as poorly as Newfoundland and Labrador, where the employment rate dropped 1.8% as losses in full-time work were only partly offset by gains in part time.

The biggest sectors where employment grew were professional, scientific, and technical sectors, seeing an increase of 5.2%. The natural resource sector saw a dramatic tumble in employment, down 6.8%, indicating the economic struggles currently plaguing Alberta.

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More people are also choosing self-employment, with rates in that sector increasing 3.4% with 92,000 more people choosing to be their own boss.

The numbers further highlight the demographics of who’s finding work in Canada and who’s not. The population aged 55 and over were the only group to record employment growth in 2015, up 6.3%, whereas the unemployment rate increased for people aged 24 to 54 and their employment rate was little changed.

Did you find a job in 2015?