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Canada’s Unemployment Rate Unchanged At 5.8% In December

Employment across Canada was unchanged in December and the unemployment rate held steady at 5.8%, according to newly released data from Statistics Canada.

The overall employment rate in the country declined by 0.2 percentage points to 61.6% in December as the population aged 15 and older grew by 74,000, mostly through immigration.

Among core-aged men (ages 25 to 54), employment rose by 25,000. However, employment declined among men older than age 55 (down 27,000).

Employment grew in professional, scientific, and technical services (up 46,000), and healthcare and social assistance (up 16,000).

However, those gains were offset by declines in five industries, led by wholesale and retail trade (down 21,000 jobs) and manufacturing (down 18,000 positions).

Employment increased in four provinces during December, led by British Columbia (up 18,000). But employment declined in Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, (down 48,000 jobs).

Total hours worked rose 1.7% on a year-over-year basis in December, while average hourly wages rose 5.4% to $34.45 during the month.