Canadian unemployment takes slight, welcome dip
Canada's unemployment rate took a slight but welcome dip last month as the economy continued to show limited signs of improvement.
October's unemployment rate fell one-tenth of a point to 7.9 per cent last month, breaking the 8 per cent mark for the first time since last June.
The fractional dip came amid generally disappointing details released by Statistics Canada on Friday that showed that only 3,000 new jobs were created in October.
The number was far fewer than the still-meager 15,000 spots economists had expected to see.
BNN's Michael Kane said there was some silver lining included in the cloudy report, with some of the details suggesting the economy is poised for future growth.
"When we dig through all these numbers, economists will tell us we have a brightening picture on the job front, and that is a relief," Kane told CTV News Channel.
Statistics Canada reported that 47,000 new full-time jobs were created in October, with that number being offset by the disappearance of 44,000 part-time positions.
"Economists like to see this because full-time jobs are the ones that provide a steady stream of income and creates a cash flow that the economy can use," Kane said.
The construction industry added 20,800 jobs in October, a sign that future growth is on the horizon.
Meantime, the service industry and retail sector shed 33,000 jobs in October. Kane said this was a surprise, especially ahead of the holiday shopping season. He said he expects that number to bounce back in November.
"You would expect that retailers would be hiring, at least part-time people, so these numbers are a little odd," Kane said.
Over the past four months, employment has shown only statistically-irrelevant changes, although it appears the jobs lost during the global recession have been recovered.
In the two years since employment peaked in October 2008, the country lost 417,000 jobs during the slump and recouped 423,000.
The jobless rate remains almost two points higher because of new entrants to the job market and growth in Canada's population.
Statistics Canada said job gains were strongest in Alberta, with 17,000 extra workers, and lowest in Nova Scotia, where 8,600 jobs were lost.
In the U.S., Kane said job growth surpassed the 60,000 new positions analysts expected to see by posting a total growth of 151,000 jobs.
With files from The Canadian Press