Labour Force Survey, September 2013

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Previous release

Employment was little changed in September, while the unemployment rate declined 0.2 percentage points to 6.9% as fewer youths searched for work.

Employment was up 1.2% (+212,000) compared with 12 months earlier. During this same period, however, the employment rate was little changed, as employment and the working-age population grew at a similar pace.

Since September 2012, the number of hours worked rose by 0.8%, as part-time employment grew at a faster pace than full time.

Chart 1 
Employment
Line chart – Chart 1: Employment, from September 2008 to September 2013

Chart description: Employment

CSV version of chart 1

There were employment gains in finance, insurance, real estate and leasing as well as natural resources and agriculture in September. At the same time, there were declines in manufacturing and public administration.

In September, employment was up in New Brunswick and down in Saskatchewan, while there was little change in the other provinces.

The number of private sector employees increased in September, while self-employment declined.

There were no notable employment changes among the major demographic groups.

Chart 2 
Unemployment rate
Line chart – Chart 2: Unemployment rate, from September 2008 to September 2013

Chart description: Unemployment rate

CSV version of chart 2

Industry perspective

Employment in finance, insurance, real estate and leasing rose by 33,000 in September, following a decline the previous month. Despite these recent changes, employment levels in this industry are similar to one year earlier.

Employment increased by 19,000 in natural resources, accounting for all the growth since September 2012 (+4.7% or +17,000).

The number of people working in agriculture increased by 8,500 in September, following a decline the previous month. Employment in this industry remains at a level similar to that of 12 months earlier.

Employment in manufacturing fell by 26,000 in September, contributing to the decline of 4.1% (-73,000) on a year-over-year basis.

There were 17,000 fewer people working in public administration in September. Employment in this industry has been declining since February, down 7.2% or 71,000 over this seven-month period.

In September, there were 74,000 more private sector employees, while there were 45,000 fewer self-employed workers. Over the previous 12 months, the number of private sector employees increased by 1.8%, while the number of public sector employees and the self-employed was little changed.

Few employment changes by province

In New Brunswick, employment increased by 2,800 in September, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 10.7%. Employment in this province was at a level similar to that of 12 months earlier.

Employment in Saskatchewan fell by 3,200. Despite this decline, employment grew by 3.1% year over year, the second highest growth rate after Alberta. In September, the unemployment rate in Saskatchewan was 4.3%, which was the same as in Alberta and the lowest among the provinces.

In September, employment in Ontario was little changed. At the same time, the unemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 7.3% as fewer youths looked for work. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in the province grew by 1.7%, above the national average of 1.2%.

Despite little change in employment in Quebec, the unemployment rate declined 0.3 percentage points to 7.6% as fewer youths searched for work. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment in the province was little changed, as gains in the first five months of the period were offset by recent losses.

Little change in employment among demographic groups

While employment for youths aged 15 to 24 was virtually unchanged in September, their unemployment rate declined by 1.2 percentage points to 12.9%. This decline was largely a result of fewer youths searching for work. Compared with 12 months earlier, youth employment increased 1.7%, mainly the result of gains in the first half of the period.

Employment in September was also little changed among people aged 25 to 54 and remains at a level similar to that of September 2012.

In September, employment among people aged 55 and over was unchanged. Compared with 12 months earlier, however, there were 140,000 more men and women working in this age group (+4.3%), largely a result of population aging.

Quarterly update for the territories

The Labour Force Survey also collects labour market information about the territories. This information is produced monthly in the form of three-month moving averages. The following data are not seasonally adjusted; therefore, comparisons should only be made on a year-over-year basis.

In the third quarter, employment levels were little changed in Yukon and the Northwest Territories compared with the third quarter of 2012. The unemployment rate also was little changed for these two territories and stood at 4.4% in Yukon and 8.4% in the Northwest Territories.

In Nunavut, employment increased by 800 over this period, all in full-time work. The unemployment rate was 14.2%, relatively unchanged from the third quarter of 2012.

Note to readers

The Labour Force Survey (LFS) estimates are based on a sample and are therefore subject to sampling variability. As a result, monthly estimates will show more variability than trends observed over longer time periods. Estimates for smaller geographic areas or industries also have more variability. For an explanation of sampling variability of estimates and how to use standard errors to assess this variability, consult the "Estimates quality" section of the publication Labour Force Information (Catalogue number71-001-X).

The employment rate is the number of employed persons as a percentage of the population 15 years of age and over. The rate for a particular group (for example, youth aged 15 to 24) is the number employed in that group as a percentage of the population for that group.

The unemployment rate is the number unemployed as a percentage of the labour force (employed and unemployed).

The participation rate is the number of employed and unemployed as a percentage of the population. For more detailed information, see the Guide to the Labour Force Survey (Catalogue number71-543-G).

Unless otherwise stated, this release presents seasonally adjusted estimates, which facilitates comparisons by removing the effects of seasonal variations. For more information on seasonal adjustment, see Recent trends in Canada's labour force participation rate.

Each year, the LFS revises its estimates for the previous three years, using the latest seasonal factors.

Available in CANSIM: tables CANSIM table282-0001 to 282-0042, CANSIM table282-0047 to 282-0051, CANSIM table282-0054, CANSIM table282-0055, CANSIM table282-0060 to 282-0063, CANSIM table282-0069 to 282-0089, CANSIM table282-0092 to 282-0095, CANSIM table282-0100 to 282-0121 and CANSIM table282-0200 to 282-0219.

Definitions, data sources and methods: survey number survey number3701.

A more detailed summary, Labour Force Information (Catalogue number71-001-X), is now available online for the week ending September 21. From the Browse by key resource module of our website under Publications, choose All subjects, then Labour.

Data tables are also now available online. From the Browse by subject module of our website, choose Labour.

The next release of the Labour Force Survey will be on November 8.

For more information, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; infostats@statcan.gc.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; mediahotline@statcan.gc.ca).

To enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact Vincent Ferrao (613-951-4750; vincent.ferrao@statcan.gc.ca) or Jason Gilmore (613-951-7118; jason.gilmore@statcan.gc.ca), Labour Statistics Division.