Employment in Canada increased by 23,000 jobs in December, a 0.9 per cent increase over December 2014. The national unemployment rate was unchanged at 7.1 per cent. For all of 2015, employment posted average growth of just under 1 per cent or about 13,000 jobs per month.
In BC, employment fell for a second consecutive month, dropping by 7,900 jobs in December. Those job losses, combined with an increase in job searchers migrating from other provinces helped to push the unemployment rate 0.5 points higher to 6.7 per cent. For the year 2015, employment in BC increased 1.3 per cent but grew at a 2 per cent rate over the second half of the year.
In the US, payrolls jumped by 292,000 jobs and revisions to past months estimates added a further 50,000 to payrolls. The US unemployment rate was unchanged at 5 per cent. Over the past three months, the US economy is averaging a robust rate of new job creation at close to 300,000 jobs per month.
Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.