Manitoba's unemployment rate holds steady as national average declines

About 4,600 people left the Montreal workforce in July.					Vadim Ghirda  AP

About 4,600 people left the Montreal workforce in July. Vadim Ghirda AP

This matches Shenfeld's call in late July, when data showed the economy grew 0.5% in May. June's value of 6 per cent fell to 5.8 per cent in July.

While the nation added 54,000 jobs last month, those gains were led by part-time jobs (+82,000).

Although Canada's unemployment rate dropped to a four-decade low last month, Calgary's jobless rate remains stubbornly high at 7.9 per cent, according to the latest numbers from Statistics Canada. Saskatchewan shed 4,200 jobs, hoisting the unemployment rate to 6.6 per cent, up 0.3 points.

While the number of jobless seems to have taken a large leap month-to-month, the local data can't be accurately compared, as it doesn't take seasonal factors into consideration. But, it could be an indicator of whether the Bank of Canada will increase interest rates next month.

The national statistics agency also reported cooling average hourly wage growth, an aspect closely monitored by the Bank of Canada, sliding to 3.2 per cent year-over-year in July from 3.6 per cent last month and 3.9 per cent in May.

Compared with a year earlier, overall employment was up 1.3 per cent following the addition of 245,900 jobs for an increase driven by 210,500 new full-time positions. Employment in the goods-producing sector fell by 36,500 jobs, mostly in manufacturing.

"While a big increase in jobs brings this series more in line with what we've seen from other indicators this year, the details leave us somewhat skeptical that the move won't be at least partly reversed in August", he said in a research note.

In an interview, Shenfeld added that "for the past year, Canadians have certainly been enjoying a very solid labour market with a low unemployment rate and that's still true in the latest data". The report said the main cause of the drop was due to the fact fewer young people were looking for work.

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