New jobs report says Calgary’s unemployment increased
While employment nationwide rose again for the second straight month, the news wasn’t quite so rosy here in Alberta and the City of Calgary.
Statistics Canada says in its monthly jobs report that Canada added 56,000 jobs in February, with most of those being full-time positions.
Alberta’s employment level was mostly unchanged from January and last February, but the agency says the number of people looking for work has increased, pushing the provincial unemployment rate up to 7.3 percent.
Calgary’s unemployment rate for February is even worse at 7.6 percent, up 0.3 percent from January. Edmonton’s unemployment rate also rose to 7.0 percent from 6.4 percent in January.
Premier Rachel Notley, speaking from a pipe manufacturing plant in Calgary, says the increase in Alberta’s unemployment could be because of people moving here and adding to the workforce.
“As you know, the report that’s out today shows that the number of jobs in Alberta has actually increased modestly month-over-month, but we’re continuing to attract workers from across the country to Alberta.”
At Friday’s appearance, Notley was announcing a new, $600M petrochemical upgrading facility to be built northeast of Edmonton, and says her government will continue with such initiatives to help add jobs to the economy.
“We’re going to continue to do stuff like this to generate more employment, to continue to invest in infrastructure generally and continue to fight to get the pipeline to tidewater in order to build that level of investor confidence that will move us forward.”
By region, Ontario saw the biggest employment increase last month with the addition of 36,900 jobs. Manitoba lost the most positions in February (3,300).
(With files from the Canadian Press)