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Good quality jobs starting to return to Alberta

Good quality jobs starting to return to Alberta

Posted on: 5/11/2018 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

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Albertans looking for work may still be having a challenge, especially since good quality jobs were particularly hard hit during the recession. But the latest snapshot of the jobs market may be pointing towards an encouraging trend.

In April, the total number of jobs in the province fell a bit, dropping 1,800 from March. However, there was a surge in full-time jobs (+8,900) which was more than offset by a decline in part-time positions (-10,700). While this left fewer people without jobs overall, it does suggest better quality, full-time jobs are coming back.

The unemployment rate picked back up to 6.7 per cent, an increase of four-tenths of a percentage point from the previous month. This remains the highest rate of unemployment in the country outside of Atlantic Canada.

Of Alberta’s two major cities, Calgary remains the more difficult one for job-seekers. Its unemployment rate sits at 8.0 per cent, while Edmonton is at 6.6 per cent.

Across the province, the last 12 months have seen strong employment gains in manufacturing (+13,100), oil and gas (+11,200) and professional, scientific and technical services (+8,100). Jobs in these sectors tend to be higher paying, reinforcing the notion that good quality jobs are gradually returning. The sectors still shedding jobs over the last year include wholesale and retail trade (-5,800) and accommodation and food (-2,500).

Employment, Alberta, graph​​​

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