Edmonton’s Job Market Slows
February 03, 2012
After outstanding job gains through 2011 the Edmonton Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) saw employment slip in January 2012. Edmonton lost 3,500 jobs as the unemployment rate rose to 5% from a December value of 4.9%.
“While January’s employment numbers for Edmonton were disappointing, the city saw gains in full-time jobs, rather than part-time, and we are seeing employment growth in higher-paying industries such as construction, oil and gas,” says John Rose, Chief Economist, City of Edmonton. “This suggests that the quality of jobs in Edmonton continues to improve.”
Edmonton’s job losses were concentrated in the public sector where government administration and education lost full and part-time jobs.
Rose notes that Alberta bucked both the local and national trends, with 1,900 new jobs in January. Alberta’s unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.9%.
At the national level, total employment was essentially unchanged for the month of January. However, an increase in the number of individuals seeking work resulted in Canada’s unemployment rate increasing to 7.6%.
“In Edmonton, continuing gains in high-paying, full-time employment will boost local incomes and encourage higher consumer expenditures,” comments Rose.
The average weekly wage in the Edmonton CMA is up 4.1% in January 2012 over January 2011. Rose says a strong consumer sector will help insulate Edmonton’s economy from negative shocks that may occur over the course of 2012 due to the continuing European debt crisis and a slow U.S. recovery.
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