Canada Cuts 43,200 Jobs in October

Canadian employers unexpectedly fired workers in October and the unemployment rate rose more than expected, suggesting the U.S.’s largest trading partner hasn’t fully recovered from the recession that began last year.

Employment fell by 43,200 last month, Statistics Canada said today in Ottawa, and the jobless rate rose to 8.6 percent from September’s 8.4 percent.

The report may make it easier for the Bank of Canada to fulfill its pledge to keep its benchmark lending rate at a record low until June 2010 to spur growth unless the inflation outlook changes materially. Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said yesterday he still expects some weakness” in employment data, adding the labor market will recover when economic growth pushes companies to invest again.

An increase of 16,500 in full-time jobs was more than offset by a 59,700 decline in part-time employment, the statistics agency said.

Retailers and wholesalers, as well as providers of other services” such as auto mechanics, hairdressers and animal groomers, led the decline in October employment, with drops of 30,800 and 19,900 positions respectively.

Governments, natural resource firms and manufacturers also reduced their workforce, the agency said. Ten of the 16 industries tracked by Statistics Canada recorded job losses.

Manufacturing firms shed 8,200 jobs, bringing the total job losses in the 12-month period to 217,700.

Information, culture and recreation companies recorded a drop of 6,400 positions.

Construction, benefiting from rising home prices and a government stimulus package that targets the industry, added 11,200 jobs during the month. From a year ago, the industry has lost 72,500 positions.

Canadian average hourly wages accelerated to 3.3 percent in October from a year earlier, compared with 2.5 percent in the previous month, Statistics Canada said today.

Canada Cuts 43,200 Jobs in October, Bloomberg
11/6/2009 8:45:15 AM