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Job creation suffers a setback

Job creation suffers a setback

Posted on: 8/10/2018 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

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Alberta experienced a net loss of 3,600 jobs last month, pushing the province’s unemployment rate back up to 6.7 per cent. This comes after two months of modest job gains and suggests, even though some indicators are pointing in the right direction, Alberta’s economic recovery is going to take a while yet.

For the second month in a row, Alberta’s labour market shed more full-time than part-time positions. While there was a rise in the number of part-time positions last month (+18,100), it wasn’t enough to offset the significant reduction in full-time jobs (-21,700).

Over the last twelve months, job creation has been strong in construction, natural resources, and professional, scientific and technical services—all sectors hit hard by the recession two years ago. But, in July, these fields showed weakness, with all three seeing job losses. Between June and July, professional, scientific and technical services lost 8,100 positions, construction cut 7,600 jobs and natural resources saw a reduction of 500 positions.

Between 2015 and 2016, Alberta experienced the economic equivalent of a torn muscle. The province is now in recovery and rehabilitating itself but, like any rehab, setbacks are inevitable. Strengthening and getting back to peak performance takes time. The province has improved from where it was even just a year ago, however, the pace of this recovery process is likely frustrating for many Albertans seeking work.

Employment, graph

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