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Employment up in most metropolitan areas compared with June 2018

Ottawa, July 8, 2019—Following Statistics Canada’s June job numbers announcement, The Conference Board of Canada’s Senior Economist Henry Diaz offers new insights on labour markets in Canada’s metropolitan areas:

“Labour markets in Canada’s metropolitan areas are performing well” says Henry Diaz, Senior Economist. “Employment increased on a year-over-year basis in 28 of 33 CMAs, including in the six largest ones, led by Toronto and Vancouver. Montréal registered the weakest gain among the Big Six with employment advancing by 0.4 per cent year-over-year.”


  • On a year-over-year basis, the number of people employed grew in 28 of 33 Canadian Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs), with gains ranging from 0.4 per cent in Montréal, Quebec, to 17.0 per cent in Brantford, Ontario.
  • Employment was up 2.3 per cent in Canada year-over-year. Most of Canada’s metropolitan labour markets added jobs at a faster rate.
  • Employment in Vancouver grew by 5.9 per cent since last June, placing it first in growth among Canada’s three largest metropolitan areas.
  • At the same time, Toronto’s 3.8 per cent increase represents 126,900 jobs, the most created among all of Canada’s metro areas. Among the Big Three, Montréal lagged behind with employment gains of 0.4 per cent, or 8,300 jobs.
  • London, Ontario, has seen the most job losses among all CMAs since June of last year. The other CMAs to shed jobs on a year-over-year basis were Oshawa, St. Catharines–Niagara, Thunder Bay, and Victoria.
  • All metropolitan areas in the Prairies added jobs at solid rates. Calgary led the way with employment gains of 5.5 per cent while Winnipeg posted the weakest gain, at a still solid 2.5 per cent.
  • In the second quarter of 2019, the unemployment rate was lower than a year ago in 18 out of 33 CMAs. St. John’s has the highest unemployment rate among CMAs at 8.1 per cent, while Québec City’s has the lowest at 2.4 per cent.

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