Employment in Canada was essentially unchanged in April following a surge of job growth in March. Total employment fell by 2,100 jobs and the national unemployment rate held steady at 7.1 per cent. Total hours worked, which is closely associated with economic growth, increased by 0.9 per cent over the past 12 months.
Employment in BC continued to expand, rising by 13,000 jobs in April which helped drive the provincial unemployment rate down 0.5 points to 5.8 per cent. April marks the first time since 1976 that BC has had the lowest unemployment rate in the country. On a year-over-year basis, employment was 4.1 per cent higher compared to last April and year-to-date employment is up 3.3 per cent in 2016.
US Non-farm payrolls increased by 160,000 jobs in April and the US unemployment rate edged remained steady at 5 per cent. Over the past three months, the US economy added an average of 200,000 jobs per month in spite of weak economic growth in the first quarter.