Canada sees best wage growth in six years


In Ottawa, the biggest monthly gains were recorded in the broad services sector, which added 6,400 positions as well as the transportation and warehousing industry, which gained 3,200 jobs. But don't expect the central bank to raise interest rates just yet.

That left the national unemployment rate at 5.8 per cent.

That helped to push the region's unemployment down to 4.4 per cent, its lowest level in well over a decade.

"Canadian employment disappointed on the headline, but the details were fairly solid and shouldn't do much to change expectations regarding the Bank of Canada and future rate hikes", said Andrew Grantham, senior economist at CIBC Capital Markets, in a note.

Unemployment in every region of Alberta for April continued to fall compared to a year ago, according to new figures from Statistics Canada. It registered a year-over-year increase of 3.3 per cent in March and 3.1 per cent the month before.

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Part of the growth seen in Ontario and Alberta was due to the mandatory hike in the minimum wage.

The trend poses a major challenge to the Bank of Canada, since how quickly the economy expands without triggering wage gains and inflation is a key question for policy makers.

In a labour force of 41,200, there were 38,600 employed and 2,600 unemployed, according to the survey released May 11. It matches its lowest mark since the agency started measuring the indicator in 1976. The agency said the economy produced around 28,800 full-time jobs while shedding around 30,000 part-time jobs.

The goods-producing sector shed 15,900 positions, mostly in construction. On a year-over-year basis, employment in the province rose by 133,000 or 1.9 per cent, all in full-time work.