Remarkable employment growth in Alberta

  • Alberta has consistently enjoyed the highest employment rates in Canada over the past three decades. In 2007, the employment rate climbed 0.7 percentage points to 71.5%, a 32-year high. Employment growth remained strong in 2007, with a remarkable 4.7% increase (+89,000) since 2006. Employment growth in the province has averaged a healthy 3.0% per year since 1993, when the most recent upward trend in employment started. This is well above the national growth rate of 2.0% for the same period.

  • In 2007, employment grew by 4.7% in Alberta, the highest rate of growth of any province. Increases were observed in both the goods-producing sector and the services-producing sector. The largest employment gains in 2007 were in the construction industry, followed by mining, oil and gas extraction; business, building and other support services; and health care and social assistance.

  • The participation rate in Alberta rose by 0.7 percentage points in 2007 to 74.1%, its highest level in 32 years and a higher rate than in any other province. The unemployment rate edged up one tenth of a percentage point to 3.5% in 2007.

  • Alberta's average hourly wage grew by 6.1% in 2007, well above the 3.5% growth at the Canada level. The rapid increase in average hourly wages and the record-high employment and participation rates in 2007 indicate that Alberta is experiencing labour shortages.

Chart C.11
Employment rates in Alberta, 1976 to 2007

Chart C.11 Employment rates in Alberta, 1976 to 2007

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, CANSIM table 282-0002.

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