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CANADA ECONOMICS: Canada January Job Losses Concentrated in Part-Time Work, Desjardins Says

· 02/05/2021 06:26

11:26 AM EST, 02/05/2021 (MT Newswires) -- Desjardins on Friday said the 213,000 jobs lost in Canada in January were concentrated among part-time workers whose workplaces were shuttered by pandemic lockdowns.

"Employment fell heavily in January with net employment change at -212.8k, markedly below the consensus of -40k, and not far from our forecast of -300k," the financial cooperative noted. "Total employment now stands at 18.3 million, 4.5% below its pre-pandemic February 2020 level. The unemployment rate increased by 0.6pp to 9.4% and the participation rate declined by 0.3pp to 64.7%, the lowest rate since August 2020. Also noteworthy is the fact that the underutilization rate went up to 18.4%, down from a peak of 36.1% in April 2020, but still significantly higher than the 11.2% level of February. Losses were entirely in part-time work (-225k, -6.7%), while full-time employment actually increased slightly (+12.6k, +0.08%). Compared to the pre-pandemic peak of February 2020, full-time work was down 423k (-2.7%) and part-time work was down 435k (-12.2%). As such, more than half of part-time job losses since February 2020 occurred this month and can be attributed to the strict second wave measures put in place by provincial governments, especially in Quebec and Ontario."