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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 January 2018

 

 Jan 2017

Dec 2017

Jan 2018

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

Dec'17 - Jan'17 % change (except rates) 

Population

   790,300

   795,300

   795,800

0.7%

0.1%

Labour force

   489,600

  493,800

   494,000

0.9%

0.0%

Employment

   451,500

  454,200

   453,500

0.4%

-0.2%

   Employment full-time

   363,300

  369,300

   370,600

2.0%

0.4%

   Employment part-time

     88,300

   84,900

    82,800

-6.2%

 -2.5%

Unemployment

     38,100

    39,600

    40,500

 6.3%

2.3%

Unemployment rate

7.8%

8.0%

8.2%

0.4

0.2

Participation rate

62.0%

62.1%

62.2%

0.1

0.0

Employment rate

57.1%

57.1%

57.0%

-0.1

-0.1

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 stayed virtually the same at 494,200 in January compared to last month. Compared to a year ago, however, the labour force increased by 4,400 (+0.9%).

    • In the past twelve months, all youth (aged 15-24 years), core-aged workers (aged 25-54 years) and older workers (aged 55 and over) experienced a labour force expansion. 
  • In the last month, employment decreased by marginally by 700 (-0.2%) to 453,500 and the number of people who are unemployed increased moderately by 900 (+2.3%). Compared to a year ago, employment increased by 2,000 (+0.4%).

    • Compared to a year ago, full-time employment increased by 7,300 (+2.0%), which was partially offset by the 5,500 (-6.2%) decrease in part-time employment.
       
    • The sectorial decomposition of employment showed that the year-to-year increase in employment can be mostly attributed to goods sector as it experienced 1,800 (+2.2%) increase in employment.

       

  • The unemployment rate was 8.2%, up by 0.2 points from December in 2017. The unemployment rate, year over year, was up by 0.4 points. Compared to a year ago, as the 2,000 increase in employment failed to fully absorb the 4,400 increase in labour force, the number of unemployed workers increased by 2,400 (+6.3%) in January 2018.

    • The increase in overall unemployment rate in the last twelve months can be mostly attributed to youth encountering difficulty in finding employment. While more youth (+1,500) is entering the labour force, youth employment decreased by 500 (-0.9%), widening the gap between youth labour force and employment.

 

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.