Dim prospects on job market as Stats Can releases latest employment numbers - Macleans.ca

Dim prospects on job market as Stats Can releases latest employment numbers


Canada’s unemployment rate fell slightly to 7.4 per cent in February, according to Statistics Canada figures released today. But that was just a reflection of how more than 37,000 people left the job market, giving up their quest to find a paying gig in this country. “The main message is that the domestic economy is now clearly struggling to post meaningful growth,” BMO Capital Markets deputy chief economist Doug Porter wrote to clients. “At this point, a renewed upturn in jobs likely requires a more robust U.S. recovery to pull exports more fully along for the ride.”

The employment market remained static in February, as the economy shed a total of 2,800 jobs, which is especially disappointing in light of predictions that Canada would gain 15,000 positions last month. The situation is most grim for Canadians under 25. In a report released yesterday by TD Economics, analyst Francis Fong concluded that any economic recovery after the 2008 financial collapse has been virtually “non-existent” for young Canadians. The report predicted that people between the ages of 15 and 24, with an unemployment rate of more than 14 per cent, shouldn’t expect things to get rosier “for several more years.” This demographic accounted for more than half of net job losses during the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009, and employment number among the age group remains 250,000 lower than before the economic downturn.

Contrast that with older Canadians (those over 25), who have seen employment availability expand to 400,000 jobs higher than levels seen before the recession. It’s an unbalanced picture that gets even more upsetting as the country continues its march toward austerity, with all levels of government keen to cut costs and balance budgets. In the upcoming federal budget, each department is expected to announce 10 per cent spending cuts, while provinces like British Columbia grapple with the public sector as it tries to curb costs.

It’s enough to make you want to go Occupy something.

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Dim prospects on job market as Stats Can releases latest employment numbers

  1. Damnit. Too soon for the cuts.  If the government was actually paying attention, they’d run with a high deficit for a couple more years, giving the economy enough juice that Carney could afford to start bringing interest rates back up to more normal levels — thus slowing down debt accumulation of Canadians.

    Austerity measures now, though, lock Carney in place to just keep the economy moving — but instead of it moving because of public debt, it’s going to be moving because of private debt, which is a hell of a lot harder to unwind gracefully.

  2. 2,800 jobs is a drop in the bucket!  I have a College diploma and I’ve been looking for work for 8 years in Toronto, Ontario, (where there is not a job to be found) and all I can find is temp employment.  The fact that I’m white, Christian Canadian, born right here on this soil, works against me because we are the most discriminated group of people in Toronto at this time.

    Driving through Toronto you’ll see the construction industry is booming!  Why are they bothering to build excessively when there is already a huge surplus of housing in Toronto?  I’ve been told they’re waiting for the next wave of illegal refugees.  Canadians do not want these illegal refugees to occupy our Country but we are outnumbered by them in Toronto where they occupy the City entirely and it’s up to Canadians to provide them with food, shelter, clothes, medical & education. No one in Government cares enough to put a stop to this flow of refugees. I’ve been in the work environment with them and they hate us.  We have money.  We’re too good.  They’re very territorial and insist that jobs are their’s.  They say, “We’re here now.”  Of course, awhile ago the Government forced employers to hire minorities and now we are out on our asses.  

    Job creation efforts only stock pile goods and it’s to the point that no one can afford them and we are stock piled to the end of eternity.

    So, I’m promoting welfare … … ‘Dispel the Myth’:  http://www-work-com.blogspot.com/   

  3. This is felt all over. I am a fresh university graduate (class 2011) with an honours bachelor of arts in political science, with legal experience, military experience, and community involvement, and I am still not having any luck at all finding a good job. I have spent months sending out resumes online and in person (with very high gas prices), and the only places I’ve gotten calls from offered me part time, retail jobs at minimum wage. Between the wages and the hours, I am still not making enough money to make my basic living expenses, never mind trying to pay back my student loan. It’s rough working six and seven days a week trying to make ends meet and beating my head against the wall wondering what I’ve been doing wrong.

    • I think unemployment is the wrong statistic for observing the impact of recessions. If you look at new hires you see the real impact. And the effect of recessions on wages isn’t transitory, either. People entering the job market during bad times experience wage depression even long after the economy has recovered.

      Yes some people lost their jobs, and that’s tough. But at least they have work experience, and a much greater ability to get back on their feet. Young people get stuck in a catch-22: for a job they need experience, for experience they need a job (and after the recovery, employers will tend to go for new graduates for entry level jobs, not people that have been working part-time in unrelated fields just to survive).

      My advice is look east, young man (or woman). There are a lot of places overseas where your western degree will take you far. Even if they don’t pay well (and some pay extremely well, eg. foreign oil-patch jobs), you can get experience, which will help you later on. Think about it – in North America we have a surplus of human capital, while in many other countries they have a shortage. Go where your skills are in demand. And I don’t mean teaching English, either.

  4. Alberta Conservatives put in a make work program for the oil industry in which oil companies could take home a million dollars for drilling a dry hole and the workers got 1 weeks work in 3 or 4.  It paid them marginally better than EI

    This served two folds:  First there are more illegal Americans (Oklahoma and Texas) working in Alberta’s oil patch than Albertans.  Because of their situation they cannot collect EI. This program covers an income for them.  There are some 13,000 people effected.

    The same group of people never showed up in the EI rolls as unemployed so it makes our job creation look great for Harper to brag about abroad and keeps the EI numbers unrealistically down.

    Bottom line is the numbers are skewed. It is far worse than they indicate and, its no time to pull support at the Federal level.

  5. I am not young however I have now lived in Vancouver BC for 3 years and have lived here before for three 3 years and I have early 20’s kids. My son has just graduated from UBC with a First (equiv) in Math. He attended a grammar school in UK and has straight A’s. He is now looking at JUST the same lack of opportunity as is being described by commenters to this article. Many BC employers do NOT want full time permanant staff. In Canada it is ALL about avoiding ‘picking up the tab’ ie the costs and commitments of hiring staff. Staff have little or no protection compared to EU regs and shit low paying work are everywhere. Canada and its people think this is opportunity.

    The only thing this place does well is to sell falsehoods as realities and dreams as truths….this is the land of the Lotus Eater here in BC. Bite at your peril….