Job market takes a hit and EI talks flounder

Could a fall election be coming our way?


The numbers are in. During the month of July, Canada lost 45,000 jobs. And that’s a lot more than most economists were predicting. “The expectation after losses of 7,400 jobs in June was that it would be double to about 15,000.” Said BNN’s Michael Kane. “So to have it come in at more than double the expectation at 44,500, that was a major event.” The Statistics Canada report, released Friday, said that the construction and hotel industries were especially hard hit.

All in all, it’s certainly a bad time for Canadian politicians to be bickering about employment insurance. On the same day that the jobs report was released, Liberals were causing a ruckus in Ottawa—accusing Harper Conservatives of holding back talks on EI reform. Liberals say that at a Thursday meeting of the special bipartisan group set up to study the issue, Harper Conservatives failed to contribute a single pragmatic idea. Described as “tense” by Liberal MP Mike Savage, the meeting is being lauded by Ignatieff’s team as a good reason to bring about a fall election. The Liberals are asking for a temporary $1.5-billion a year plan to help Canadians through the recession. Looks like they’ll need it—now more than ever.

CTV News

The Globe and Mail

Filed under:

Job market takes a hit and EI talks flounder

  1. "All in all, it's certainly a bad time for Canadian politicians to be bickering about employment insurance"'s a bad time for CONSERVATIVE politicians to be bickering about EI reform. As I recall, the Liberals want to make it easier for people to get access. The Conservatives don't. Amid all the talk of job losses and the spin control magazines like Maclean's and radio stations like AM640 will do, this is only a bad thing for the government. I thought Harper was an economist?

    • Actually, he only has a degree in economics… he's a political strategist who dabbles in megalomania.

  2. Job losses for July 2008 = 55,000

    Job losses for July 2009 = 45,000

    Drastic changes required, immediately! Or not!

    • I don't know what in God's name your talking about. Last year at this time this magazine was predicting 200 bbl. oil and Alberta's biggest problem was that there simply not enough Maritimers and Newfoundlands left to keep expanding the oil patch and the tar sands. Now the economy has fallen off a cliff. Oil is half what it was going for last year but the greedhead oil companies have ratcheted up the price of gas closer and closer to what it was last year. If that doesn't choke off any recovery I don't know what will. That and the fact that the consuming middle class has been thrown overboard by companies who found it more profitable to make things with child slave labour in third world hell holes. Now the Naustradumbasses are shocked that unemployed, bankrupt people have no disposable income to kickstart the economy after saying the recession is over. It ain't over till the fat lady sings, and she ain't even warming up the local chords. Cheers.

      • Its called the "oil sands". There is no tar there…

    • There's a reasonable argument that the recession started last July… and was simply ignored by the steady as she goes approach…

      • And now that little green shoots are apparently cropping up everywhere, now is when we should have an election on how to fix things?

        I don't disagree with the steady as she goes approach, yes the recession started last July maybe even earlier but it wasn't affecting the whole country. The panic of the late fall, early winter caused everyone to curtail their spending and hold their breath.

        The whole problem here is unemployment numbers are a lagging indicator. We might know at the beginning of August how many jobs were lost in July but the actual July unemployment rate won't be out for some time. It's those rates that cause the regional qualifying conditions to adjust. So your laid off in February but the unemployment rate for Feb is not known until April/May time frame. This laid off worker might very well have qualified for EI if the numbers were not so lagging.

    • 1. that was the largest monthly decline in jobs since 1991
      2. unemployment was only 6.1% then, and it's 8.6% now

  3. Yeah, let's have monthly election. Until the Liberals win, and then we can stop having elections at all.
    Hanging out an extra 1.5 billion while the deficit is skyrocketing is not a bright idea. And I fail to see why people who lost their jobs last year deserved no extra cash handouts, the people who lose their jobs next year deserve nothing, while the people who lose their jobs this year deserve extra-special bonus packages for losing their jobs at just the right time, when the Liberals want to make some noise.

    • That's called politics.

    • $1.5 Billion? Gee, just last month EI360 was supposed to cost $1 Billion, TD even said so,
      now it's up 50%….Did someone forget to factor in an increase in job losses? Silly experts!
      This smells like the Gun Registry.

      Funny how it was the Liberals, at a time when unemployment was a whisker shy of 10%, who changed the rules to what we have today….yet today, only a cruel unfeeling Conservative government would not consider the loving LibDipper EI360 proposal…funny eh.

      And how is it that there are second class Canadians that would not qualify for EI360?
      If you get laid off from your first job, or first job in 2 years, or you need sick/maternity leave….sucks to be you, the old rules apply, Liberals won't tolerate that kind of EI abuse!!!

      Gee, 'experts' say the first to be laid off are in low paying jobs, a typical job of the young and/or new Canadians.

  4. It's beautiful. The Libs can threaten an election over throwing more money at EI, and if the Cons buckle then the Libs can scream about how the deficit is increasing.

    The LPC – always looking out for Canadians, albeit only Canadians Who Sit in the House of Commons on the Liberal Side.

  5. Please, why do we have to perpetuate further this era of entitlement. If you lose your job, adapt.

    • Exactly! Nobody owes you, or anyone else for that matter, a living.

  6. So IF there is a consensus on a national EI standard,
    obviously not the ridiculously low 360….who gets to tell Danny that his subjects may need more hours to qualify and/or will have to pay higher premiums in the future?

  7. The 360 idea is a political loser … might win y'some votes, but lose you a helluva lot more. Plus it's just a DUMB idea. When Trudeau introduced EI reforms that made 320 the number of qualifying hours, the base unemployment rate went up by 2%!!! Yeah, that's what we want!

    It's idiotic to think that someone could work for 9 wks, and then qualify for 19 wks EI … if it was 2 wks benefits for 9 wks of work, ok, but then it's not even worth the administrative cost.

    I think it's high time we had an election over this very issue … the 360 hours qualifying requirement … so Canada can put this monster to bed. Seeing as all 3 opposition parties have signed onto the 360 threshold (of course the Libs have only done so b/c they have seats out east to protect, and don't want to give the NDP any kind of sniff at them), this is a perfect issue for the Conservatives to go to the electorate on.

    Either they win on it (likely) and the monster is buried for good, or they lose the election, it gets implemented, and they are proven right in a few years time. Either way they ultimately win. Perfect!

  8. Now would be a good time for Linda,"Plenty to Eat" mcQuaig or Carolyn," I hate those buzzards" Parrish to voice some vintage anti-American anti-Corporate culture sentimentality.