The number of unemployed people in Greater Victoria dropped in September, but so did numbers measuring labour force size and participation.
According to Statistics Canada, Victoria Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) recorded an unemployment rate of 4.7 per cent, in September, down 0.2 per cent from 4.9 per cent in August.
The unemployment rate measures the number of unemployed persons as a percentage share of the labour force, which includes those employed or looking for employment. Overall, Greater Victoria’s labour force dropped by 0.3 per cent to 224,100. As for the actual workers, it dropped to 214,000 from 216,400.
Looking at specific industries, the number of people working in health care and social assistance dropped to 32,900 from 34,100. Fewer people also worked in construction, where employment dropped to 19,500 from 20,200. Other key sectors, however, saw increases. The number of people working in accommodation and food services rose to 14,700 from 14,000, while the number of people working in information, culture and recreation rose to 9,000 from 8,400.
Looking beyond Greater Victora, Vancouver Island and the Coast CMA recorded an unemployment rate of 4.3 per cent in September, the same rate as British Columbia as a whole. Vancouver CMA’s unemployment rate was 4.5 per cent, Abbotsford–Mission’s rate was 6.2 while Kelowna’s rate was 4.1 per cent. Canada’s unemployment rate in September fell 0.2 per cent to 5.2 per cent, with Quebec City recording the lowest unemployment with 2.7 per cent.
Hourly wages rose 5.2 per cent on a year-to-year basis in September, which marked the fourth straight month that hourly wages rose by at least five per cent. By comparison though, CPI was at or above seven per cent from May to August.
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