Employment numbers made no significant gains in Alberta last month

Sep 4 2020, 6:54 pm

Alberta saw little change to its employment figures for August, though the province did manage to report a 1% drop in people looking for work.

According to Statistics Canada’s latest Labour Force Survey, Alberta and New Brunswick were the only two provinces not to see increases, with the largest job gains seen in Ontario and Quebec.

Employment numbers did not decline either and the unemployment rate did drop by one point to 11.8%, as “fewer people looked for work,” according to Stats Can.

While employment in the natural resources sector declined nationwide, that bulk of that decrease was in Wild Rose Country, as Alberta accounted for 7,000 of 9,000 jobs lost in the industry last month.

“Capital expenditures in the oil and gas extraction industries declined by over half (54%) from the first quarter to the second quarter, including spending on exploration and evaluation,” Stats Can wrote in the update.

Despite this, employment in the sector is at 95.9% of its pre-pandemic levels in February.

Nationwide, employment rose by 1.4% in August compared to 2.4% in July. The national unemployment rate also fell 0.7 percentage points to 10.2% last month.

Canadians who were employed but worked less than half their usual hours fell by 259,000, a decrease of 14.6% in August.

The number of those working at locations besides their home took a leap upwards at almost 400,000 as well.

“All of the employment increase in August was in full-time work, which rose by 206,000 (+1.4%), while the number of part-time workers was little changed,” said StatsCan.

As of the week of August 9 to 15, the total number of Canadian workers affected by the COVID-19 economic shutdown stood at 1.8 million, according to the report.

With files from Karen Doradea.

Peter SmithPeter Smith

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