Latest Labour Market Notes
Download the complete report: Labour Market Notes (January 2019)
Published January 4, 2019 (PDF, 916 KB)
See below for highlights from the publication.
Employment gives back some of the gains
Alberta Labour Market Indicators
|Year-over-year % change||0.9%|
|Alberta unemployment rate (UR)||6.4%|
|Average Weekly Earnings (AWE)||$1,143.82|
|Year-over-year % change||0.2%|
|Average hourly wage||$31.24|
|Year-over-year % change||1.5%|
|Job vacancy rate***||2.0%|
* All data is from the December 2018 Labour Force Survey, except AWE which is the October 2018 Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours, and the Job Vacancy Rate is for September 2018.
** This indicator is calculated as a 3‑month moving average and is seasonally adjusted.
*** This indicator is calculated as a 3‑month moving average and is not seasonally adjusted.
Employment reverses gains
- Employment retreated 16,900 in December after a surge in the previous month.
- Both full-time and private sector employment, which saw outsized gains in November, pulled back significantly. Full-time employment erased nearly all of November’s gain (-36,200), overshadowing gains in part-time work (+19,300).
Private sector pulls back
- Private sector employment also retreated sharply (-15,700) after climbing to a 3-year high in the previous month, while public sector employment also eased (-1,700).
- Conversely, self-employment advanced marginally (+500) after declining in 3 of the previous 4 months.
Service sector leads retreat
- Employment in both the service (-11,400) and goods (-5,500) sectors retreated on the heels of last month’s solid gains, with 9 of the 16 industries reporting declines.
- Industries that recorded the most notable losses were construction (-8,600), finance, insurance and real estate (-5,100), and public administration (-5,700).
- Employment in the natural resource industries also fell (-1,600) after last month’s modest gain.
- Conversely, manufacturing saw solid gains for the second month in a row (+6,100).
Unemployment rate inches higher
- Despite the sharp pullback in employment, the unemployment rate only ticked up 0.1 percentage point to 6.4% as the labour force participation rate fell back to the May 2018 level of 71.6%.
Year-over-year growth moderates
- With the monthly decline, employment growth slowed in December compared to the same period last year.
- Year-over-year growth moderated to 0.9% or 21,600 jobs in December falling from an average of 2.3% in the previous 3 months.
Earnings edge up
- Average weekly earnings (AWE) rose $4.29 in October to $1,144, rebounding from a loss in September.
Employment growth by province
Year-over-year % change - December 2018 vs. December 2017
The “Labour InSight” section covers a labour market topic in more detail.
2018 Labour Market Year in Review
Building on last year’s improvement, Alberta’s labour market continued to make headway in 2018. Average annual employment rose by 43,800 or 1.9%, compared to 1.0% in 2017, and the unemployment rate improved. Employment was underpinned by a rotation to full-time and private sector gains.
This Labour InSight looks at the trends in Alberta’s labour market in 2018.
Download the complete report: Labour InSight (January 2019)
Published January 4, 2019 (PDF, 916 KB)
- December 2018: Unexpected surge in employment, unemployment rate falls (PDF, 445 KB)
- Labour InSight: Lagging recovery in payroll employment
- November 2018: Growing labour force pushes the unemployment rate higher (PDF, 445 KB)
- Labour InSight: Calgary labour market softens
- October 2018: Private sector improves despite headline employment dip (PDF, 445 KB)
- Labour InSight: Employment in Wood Buffalo-Cold-Lake
- September 2018: Alberta's employment surges ahead (PDF, 524 KB)
- Labour InSight: Immigrants in the Alberta labour market
- August 2018: Labour market takes a pause (PDF, 545 KB)
- Labour InSight: Strength in manufacturing
- July 2018: Employment improves in June (PDF, 464 KB)
- Labour InSight: Trends in temporary work
- June 2018: Unemployment rate falls amid modest job growth (PDF, 464 KB)
- Labour InSight: Labour market adjusting
- May 2018: More full-time and private sector jobs (PDF, 437 KB)
- Labour InSight: Albertans work more hours and miss less work
- April 2018: Solid job gains in March (PDF, 1.3 MB)
- Labour InSight: Job market improving for job seekers
- March 2018: Unemployment rate falls with modest job growth (PDF, 466 KB)
- Labour InSight: Job tenure trends in Alberta
- February 2018: Employment pulls back while full-time surges (PDF, 835 KB)
- Labour InSight: Growing number of employment opportunities
- January 2018: Strong finish to 2017 (PDF, 1.2 MB)
- Labour InSight: Labour market moves forward in 2017
Issues prior to 2018
Labour Market Notes Archive (August 2012 to current)