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October sees unemployment rate drop to 4.3 per cent

But more people say they are struggling to meet bills
The transportation sector was among the sectors adding jobs in Greater Victoria in October. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Unemployment in Victoria Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) dropped by 0.4 per cent to 4.3 per cent in October, according to Statistics Canada. But other figures suggest a worsening economic picture.

While employment in the local goods-producing sector remained steady, more workers joined the service-producing sector in Greater Victoria. Sub-sectors such as accommodation and food services; transportation and warehousing; and educational services grew in October. Other sub-sectors including public administration and professional, scientific and technical service saw declines.

Following four months of declines or little change, employment rose by 108,000 (0.6 per cent) in October across Canada – nationally the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5.2 per cent. October’s rise in employment recoups losses observed between May and September – with employment in Canada reaching a new high in May.

RELATED: Employment numbers rise in Greater Victoria despite increase in unemployment rate

“In general, monthly employment growth can be the result of several factors, including more people finding work after being unemployed or out of the labour force; fewer people leaving or losing their job; and population growth, including new working-age immigrants who start a job or a business after arriving in Canada,” reads an accompanying analysis from Statistics Canada.

But if the national unemployment rate remains relatively low, more than one in three Canadians aged 15 and older (35.3 per cent) found it difficult or very difficult to pay their bills in October, up from 20.4 per cent in September.

“Among people aged 25 to 54, workers in accommodation and food services (43.2 per cent), retail trade (42.4 per cent), and transportation and warehousing (42.4 per cent) were among the most likely to reside in households facing financial difficulty in October,” it reads.

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Wolf Depner

About the Author: Wolf Depner

I joined the national team with Black Press Media in 2023 from the Peninsula News Review, where I had reported on Vancouver Island's Saanich Peninsula since 2019.
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