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Nova Scotia Labour Market Statistics

This section provides information on Nova Scotia’s labour market trends covering employment, unemployment, wages, regions, industries, labour productivity, and demographics. Access labour market information and Nova Scotia's labour market statistics through the menu of topics on the left-hand side of this page.
 

Nova Scotia Labour Force Update April 2018

 

 Apr 2017

Mar 2018

Apr 2018

Apr'17 - Apr'18, % change (except rates)

Mar'18 - Apr'18 % change (except rates) 

Population

   791,200

   796,600

   797,000

0.7%

0.1%

Labour force

   491,200

  491,400

   491,400

-0.1%

-0.2%

Employment

   449,700

  455,000

   457,700

1.8%

0.6%

   Employment full-time

   365,900

  375,100

   376,200

2.8%

0.3%

   Employment part-time

     83,800

   79,900

    81,600

-2.6%

 2.1%

Unemployment

     41,400

    36,400

    32,800

 -20.8%

-9.9%

Unemployment rate

8.4%

7.4 %

6.7%

-1.7

-0.7

Participation rate

62.1%

61.7%

61.5%

-0.6

-0.2

Employment rate

56.8%

57.1%

57.4%

0.6

0.3

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, CANSIM 282-0087, Seasonally Adjusted, Both Sexes, Ages 15+
Notes: The sum of individual categories may not always add up to the total as a result of rounding.

 

  • Nova Scotia’s labour force decreased by 900 (-0.2%) from 491,400 to 490,500 in April compared to last month. Compared to a year ago, the labour force decreased by 700 (-0.1%).

    • In the past twelve months, both youth (aged 15-24 years) and older workers (aged 55 and over) experienced shrinking labour force, which was partially offset by the expansion of core-aged workers (aged 25-54 years). 
  • In the last month, employment increased by 2,700 (+0.6%) to 457,700 and the number of people who are unemployed decreased by 3,600 (-9.9%). Compared to a year ago, employment increased by 8,000 (+1.8%).

    • The employment boost in the last twelve months can be mostly attributed to the success achieved by the core-aged workers and older workers. They gained 7,400 (+2.6%) and 2,000 (+1.9%) employment respectively while youth suffered from declining employment by 1,400 (-2.3%).
       
    • Compared to a year ago, full-time employment increased by 10,300 (+2.8%) which was partially offset by the 2,200 (-2.6%) decrease in part-time employment.
       
    • The sectoral decomposition showed that both goods sector and service sector experienced employment expansion by 3,100 (+3.8%) and 4,900 (+1.3%) respectively in the last year.
  • The unemployment rate was 6.7%, down by 0.7 points from March, the lowest on record since the Labour Force Survey began in 1976. Compared to a year ago, as labour force shrank by 700 (-0.1%) and the employment increased by 8,000 (+1.8%), the number of unemployed workers decreased significantly by 8,600 (-20.8%) in April.

Nova Scotia Labour Force Annual Update

Labour Force Characteristic

Jan-Dec
2016

Jan-Dec
2017
% Change
Population 788,700 792,500 0.5%
Labour Force 486,600 490,100 0.7%
Employment 446,200 449,000 0.6%
     Employment full-time 363,700 364,100 0.1%
     Employment part-time 82,500 84,900 2.9%
Unemployment 40,400 41,000 1.5%
Unemployment Rate 8.3% 8.4% 0.1
Participation Rate 61.7% 61.8% 0.1
Employment Rate 56.6% 56.7% 0.1
Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, CANSIM 282-0002 Seasonally Adjusted, Both Sexes, Ages 15+
Note: The sum of individual categories may not always add up to the total as a result of rounding.

 

  • In 2017, Nova Scotia’s labour force increased by 3,500 (+0.7%) compared to 2016.
  • Overall employment increased by 2,800 (+0.6%), mainly spurred by the 2,400 (+2.9%) increase in the part-time employment.
  • Unemployment increased by 600 (+1.5%) as the labour market was not able to fully absorb the increase in the labour supply. As a result, the unemployment rate rose from 8.3% in 2016 to 8.4% in 2017.
  • Youth (aged 15-24), core-aged workers (aged 25-54) and older workers (aged 55 and over) became more active in the labour market compared to a year ago. However, their impact on the participation rate is mostly offset by the aging labour force where older workers have a lower participation rate. As a result, the participation rate increased marginally by 0.1 point.
  • The proportion of the working age population that is employed increased slightly by 0.1 points from 56.6% in 2016 to 56.7% in 2017.