FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. saw an increase for the second straight month last month, and was the region with the second-highest rate in the province.
According to numbers released by Stats Canada today, Northeast B.C.’s unemployment rate jumped from 7.0 in May to 7.3 percent in June. The number of full-time jobs in the region fell by 800 from May to June, while the number of part-time jobs increased for the second straight month, this time by 500 jobs.
The number of total jobs in this part of the province has also fallen from roughly 40,700 in February to 37,900 in June. The rate of employment in Northeast B.C. also fell 1.2 percent, to 67.1 percent last month. The regional labour force has fallen from a high of approximately 44,600 in February to 40,900 in June.
Comparing our region to the other regions in B.C., Northeast B.C. now sits with the second-highest unemployment rate, behind only the Kootenay region’s rate of 7.5 percent. Northeast B.C. was also the only region in B.C. whose unemployment rate increased from May to June. Despite this, Northeast B.C. still has the highest rate of employment in the province, at 67.1 percent. The Lower Mainland and Cariboo regions have the next highest rates, at 64.3 percent and 63.5 percent respectively.
B.C. as a whole saw a gain of roughly 20,000 total jobs last month. The provincial unemployment rate fell by a whopping 0.4 percent to 5.1 percent, and the rate of employment increased by 0.7 percent to 62.5 percent. The number of unemployed workers in B.C. decreased from May to June, falling from 142,000 to 134,500.
The national unemployment rate also saw a drop from 6.8 to 6.5 percent last month. More than 351,000 jobs have been added across the country in the past 12 months, with net gains in the number of jobs in 10 of the previous 12 months. The last time Canada saw this kind of jobs growth was in 1979.