MONTREAL: Canada’s unemployment rate fell 0.1 percentage points in June to 6.5 percent, official data showed Friday, with 45,000 new jobs added compared to the previous month, mainly in part-time work and among women.
The number of jobs added was almost four times greater than economists’ predictions, which foresaw a modest rise of 12,000.
“In the second quarter of 2017, overall employment grew by 103,000 (+0.6 percent), the fourth consecutive quarter of strong employment growth and the largest quarterly increase since 2010,” Statistics Canada said.
The latest gains come after 55,000 new jobs were added in May, a sign of the economy’s growing strength over the past year.
Rising employment could soon see the central bank tighten monetary policy, with the first rate hike in nearly seven years probable next week, according to analysts with CIBC bank.
Employment gains in June were led by women aged 55 and older, with the group seeing an increase of 31,000.
The number of employed women aged 25 to 54 edged up by 17,000 — a gain of 0.6 percent, though the rate for men in the same age group remained steady.
Youth unemployment remained steady at 12 percent.
The biggest increase took place in the professional, scientific and technical services sector which added 27,000 jobs, while agriculture saw a significant bump of 12,000 positions.