Canada’s job market continues to recover, adding 245,800 jobs in August.
According to Statistics Canada, the vast majority (205,800) were full-time positions.
“Unlike July, job growth was titled toward full-time work, a sign that business conditions are gradually getting back to normal,” said Indeed economist Brendon Bernard.
“The boost from the reopening of previously shuttered sectors continued, with accommodation and food service, as well as other services, making outsized contributions to job growth, alongside a pop in education employment.”
The unemployment rate improved to 10.2 per cent, a decline of 0.7 percentage points. It hit an all-time high of 13.7 per cent in May.
After a string of gains in May, June, and July, employment is within 1.1 million of its pre-COVID February level. The number of workers affected by COVID-19 stood at 1.8 million, down from 5.5 million April peak.
Fewer people worked from home for the fourth straight month. In August, 2.5 million Canadians worked from home compared to 2.5 million in April.
Employment among women continued to play catch up (150,000) up after heavier losses at the start of the pandemic compared to men (96,000), for the third consecutive month.
Employment among youth (aged 15 to 24), the hardest segment, was at 84.7 per cent of February levels.
Unemployment rates were highest among Arab (17.9%), Black (17.6%) and Southeast Asian (16.6%) Canadians.
Ontario led the way by adding 141,800 jobs. New Brunswick was the only province without gains.
Gains in services-producing sectors (218,000) continued to outpace the goods-producing sector (28,000).
“August was another big step in the right direction of getting back to normal, but we’re still more than a million jobs away. And, that headline result masks a loss in hours among others on the job, with total hours worked still down a towering 8.6% from pre-pandemic levels (even with a Q3 resurgence),” said BMO chief economist Douglas Porter.
“The gains will become much more modest from here on out, and we continue to expect the jobless rate to finish next year 2-3 percentage points higher than where we started this year.”
The U.S. added 1.4 million jobs in August and the unemployment rate fell to 8.4 per cent from 10.2 per cent.
Correction: An earlier version of this article stated Alberta and New Brunswick were the only provinces without employment gains in August, as stated in the text of the Labour Force Survey from Statistics Canada. However, the data in the same survey release show a gain of 9,700 jobs in the month of August in Alberta.
Jessy Bains is a senior reporter at Yahoo Finance Canada. Follow him on Twitter @jessysbains.
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