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Economy loses 29K jobs

The latest labour-market data says the Canadian economy unexpectedly lost 28,900 net jobs in April, suffering its biggest employment drop since December 2013.

Statistics Canada's Labour Force Survey found the unemployment rate remained at 6.9 per cent for the second straight month, suggesting that some Canadians had given up looking for work.

Economists had anticipated an increase of 12,000 jobs for April, according to Thomson Reuters. The last time the Canadian economy saw such a drop was December 2013, when it lost 44,000 jobs.

The April job losses follow a gain of 42,900 net new jobs in March, which means 14,000 jobs were added over the two-month period.

The report also showed that 30,900 full-time jobs were lost in April, compared with the addition of 2,000 positions in part-time employment.

The Statistics Canada data says the employment drop struck Quebec, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Prince Edward Island.

The report found there were 27,100 fewer jobs held by young Canadians aged 15-24, while the youth unemployment rate stayed put at 13.4 per cent.

The biggest April loss struck the accommodation and food services industry, where 32,200 fewer people found work.

Employment in finance, insurance, real estate and leasing dropped by 19,400, while jobs were created for the second consecutive month in business, building and other support services, which saw an increase of 26,100.

Here's a quick look at the April unemployment figures (previous month in brackets):

  • Unemployment rate: 6.9 per cent (6.9)
  • Employment rate: 61.5 per cent (61.7)
  • Labour force participation rate: 66.1 per cent (66.2)
  • Number unemployed: 1,328,600 (1,325,400)
  • Number working: 17,804,300 (17,833,200)
  • Youth (15-24 years) unemployment: 13.4 per cent (13.6)
  • Men (25 plus) unemployment: 6.2 per cent (6.1)
  • Women (25 plus) unemployment: 5.5 per cent (5.4)

Here's what happened provincially (previous month in brackets):

  • Newfoundland 12.1 (11.6)
  • Prince Edward Island 11.7 (11.8)
  • Nova Scotia 8.9 (9.3)
  • New Brunswick 10.5 (9.7)
  • Quebec 7.6 (7.6)
  • Ontario 7.4 (7.3)
  • Manitoba 5.9 (5.7)
  • Saskatchewan 3.4 (4.5)
  • Alberta 4.7 (4.9)
  • British Columbia 5.8 (5.8)

Statistics Canada also released seasonally adjusted, three-month moving average unemployment rates for major cities but cautions the figures may fluctuate widely because they are based on small statistical samples. Here's what happened in the cities (Previous month in brackets):

  • St. John's, N.L. 5.9 (5.2)
  • Halifax 6.1 (6.4)
  • Moncton, N.B. 6.8 (6.4)
  • Saint John, N.B. 7.3 (6.8)
  • Saguenay, Que. 10.1 (9.4)
  • Quebec 4.5 (4.1)
  • Sherbrooke, Que. 8.3 (7.8)
  • Trois-Rivieres, Que. 8.1 (8.5)
  • Montreal 7.9 (7.9)
  • Gatineau, Que. 6.7 (6.7)
  • Ottawa 6.9 (6.5)
  • Kingston, Ont. 6.4 (6.4)
  • Peterborough, Ont. 11.6 (11.2)
  • Oshawa, Ont. 7.0 (7.1)
  • Toronto 7.8 (8.0)
  • Hamilton, Ont. 6.4 (5.8)
  • St. Catharines-Niagara, Ont. 8.2 (8.3)
  • Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo, Ont. 6.8 (6.7)
  • Brantford, Ont. 7.0 (7.4)
  • Guelph, Ont. 7.2 (6.9)
  • London, Ont. 8.0 (8.2)
  • Windsor, Ont. 8.4 (7.3)
  • Barrie, Ont. 7.2 (7.4)
  • Sudbury, Ont. 6.2 (6.7)
  • Thunder Bay, Ont. 5.8 (5.8)
  • Winnipeg 5.7 (5.6)
  • Regina 3.4 (3.7)
  • Saskatoon 4.4 (4.6)
  • Calgary 5.3 (5.0)
  • Edmonton 4.8 (4.8)
  • Kelowna, B.C. 5.3 (5.5)
  • Abbotsford, B.C. 7.8 (8.2)
  • Vancouver 5.7 (5.9)
  • Victoria 5.1 (5.2)

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