After three months of little change, employment increased by 41,000 (+0.2%) in March, lowering the unemployment rate by 0.2 percentage points to 7.1%.
With the gains in March, employment grew by 0.2% in the first quarter (+33,000). This was the fourth consecutive quarter with 0.2% employment growth.
In the 12 months to March, employment increased by 130,000 (+0.7%), the result of growth in full-time work. Over the same period, the number of hours worked increased by 1.2%.
In March, employment increased among men and women aged 25 to 54, while there was little change among the other demographic groups.
There were more people employed in Alberta, Manitoba, Nova Scotia and Saskatchewan. At the same time, employment declined in Prince Edward Island and was little changed in the other provinces.
Employment increased in health care and social assistance, accommodation and food services, professional, scientific and technical services as well as ‘other services.’ In contrast, there were fewer people employed in manufacturing.
The number of private sector employees increased in March, while there was little change in the number of public sector employees and self-employed workers.
Adjusted to US concepts, the unemployment rate in Canada was 6.1% in March versus 5.0% in the United States.