Statistics Canada says 45,900 jobs lost in December, unemployment rate rises


OTTAWA – The Canadian economy lost a surprising 45,900 jobs in December and the unemployment rate rose unexpectedly as more people searched for work, Statistics Canada said Friday.

Canada’s national unemployment rate rose to 7.2 per cent for the final month of the year, compared with 6.9 per cent in November.

The December drop was led by a decline in full-time jobs, which fell by roughly 60,000. That loss was offset in part by a gain of 14,200 part-time jobs.

Economists had expected the economy to add 14,600 jobs and the unemployment rate to hold steady at 6.9 per cent, according to estimates compiled by Thomson Reuters.

The loonie fell half a cent to 91.65 cents US, its lowest level since September 2009, following the jobs report.

TD Bank senior economist Sonya Gulati said the labour market ended 2013 on a very soft note, in three ways.

“Not only was the headline contraction in December sizable, but the losses were broad-based across industries and exclusively seen in full-time positions,” Gulati wrote in a report.

The loss for the month brought the total job gains for 2013 to 102,000, the slowest annual pace since 2009.

However Gulati suggested the disappointing December report may be a one-off and not the new normal, with indicators to date suggesting the economy grew by two to 2.5 per cent in the fourth quarter.

“The underlying momentum will likely encourage employers to once again add to their payrolls, albeit at a modest rate of roughly 10-15,000 positions per month,” she said.

For the month, Ontario and Alberta led the provinces lower with losses of 39,000 and 12,000 respectively. Meanwhile, British Columbia added 13,000 jobs and Newfoundland and Labrador gained 1,900.

By industry, there were 19,000 fewer jobs in educational services, while the other services category, which includes personal care services as well as civic and social organizations, lost 15,000. The agriculture sector lost 9,800 and natural resources lost 8,000.

Health care and social assistance was the only industry to see gains in December as the sector added 22,000 jobs.

The disappointing December job report capped a week of generally soft Canadian economic data that has seen the loonie drop to its lowest level since September 2009.

Statistics Canada reported earlier this week that Canada’s trade deficit edged higher in November as imports inched higher and exports stalled.

The country’s overall trade deficit with the world grew to $940 million in November as imports rose to $40.7 billion, while exports were unchanged at $39.8 billion. The deficit came as the results for October were also revised to show a deficit of $908 million compared with an initial report of a surplus of $75 million for the month.

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Statistics Canada says 45,900 jobs lost in December, unemployment rate rises

  1. When do we get to start judging the Harper Government on it’s economic record again?

  2. As Harper and his Cons. supporters will have Canadians believe, they are better economic managers. But time and tie again, they have been proven wrong that, they cannot manage a simple lemonade stand let alone the economy of this Country. It’s sad that some Canadians still believe anything that comes out of these lying nonentities. A govt. that is supposedly better money/economic managers have never balanced a budget in their 8years in power and still want majority Canadians of believe them when they say something. I have never trusted them with managing Canada and never will. I saw the signs and evidence of their inability to do Canada good, hence they will never get my vote. There are real Conservatives and there Conservatives wananbe in names only. these group give real fiscal Conservatives around the world a very bad name.

    • Now revealed that Bev Oda got close to a game resort in East Africa costing Candian taxpayers more money for her official stay( so don’t worry the $16 OJ was peanuts). The NDP or the Liberals could have done the same job with the economy if they were in power now, instead we have a littany of Harper scandals cum incivility (may I call it thuggery – like the Governor Christie” brashness”) (he is rather good at that x 8 years) when he was supposed to clean up (transparency/accountability) after the Liberalgate –

    • Harper paid off 30 billion in debt in his first two years.
      Then he tabled a balanced budget but the opposition pulled their coup and demanded vastly increased spending.

      Look it up, apologize to all of us for lying, and quit being a low information voter.

  3. Its still “fragile” Flaherty. And Harper is going to jack up the ‘economic action plan’ TV ads – which no one looks at after 4 years – boost it to 200 million dollars?

    • Wake me up when it reaches $1 billion a year, that will just about offset the billion bucks a year we give the CBC to spout Marxist propaganda.

  4. Thank Wynne and the idiotic environmental protest groups.