Canada's Unemployment Rate Up to 7.5% in December

Following two months of declines, employment rose slightly in December, up 18,000. The unemployment rate edged up to 7.5% as more people participated in the labour market. Over the past 12 months, employment growth totalled 1.2% (+199,000), with nearly all of the gains in the first half of the year., Statistics Canada 1/6/2012 2:06:59 PM

The employment growth of 1.2% from December 2010 to December 2011 followed an increase of 1.8% between December 2009 and December 2010.

In December, an increase of 43,000 in part-time work was partially offset by a decline of 26,000 in full-time employment. Compared with 12 months earlier, the number of part-time workers was little changed, while full-time employment was up 1.5% (+208,000). Over the same period, the total number of hours worked increased by 1.4%.

Among the provinces, employment increased in British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island in December. In contrast, employment declined in Quebec, while there was little change in the other provinces.

There were notable employment gains in manufacturing for the month, while there were declines in utilities. All other industries showed little employment change.

There were 31,000 more self-employed workers in December. Compared with 12 months earlier, self-employment was up 2.0%, while the number of private sector employees rose 1.3%, and the number of public sector workers was unchanged.

Employment increased in December among people aged 55 and over. At the same time, there was a decline among youths aged 15 to 24, and little change for people aged 25 to 54