A TD Economics Special Report released on October 22nd debunked the popular economic myth spread by Minister Kenney that there are too many jobs without people. The report looks at changes in employment, unemployment, job vacancy rates, and wages. Job vacancy rates are higher for trades occupations in Western Canada, but overall job vacancy rates are low.
There is no sign of wage pressure, even in occupations with perceived shortages, which the report points out as being quite puzzling. In Saskatchewan, wages for *in demand* occupations are actually growing at a slower rate than the provincial average.
The “No Widespread (Read more…)
Today’s Labour Force numbers provide more evidence that Canada’s labour market is still mired in a 3-year funk. Following one year of decent recovery from mid-2009 (the trough of the recession) to mid-2010, driven mostly by extraordinary monetary and fiscal stimulus, further progress has been stalled ever since.
Most headlines focus on the unemployment rate, but that is a misleading indicator — especially during sluggish times (when many workers give up looking for non-existent jobs, and hence disappear from the official unemployment rolls). The Canadian unemployment rate rose to 7.2% in July, and is now just a smidge (Read more…)
It has recently been reported that the University of Alberta wants to “reopen two-year collective agreements” with faculty and staff “to help the university balance its budget…”
This appears to be in direct response to Alberta’s provincial government announcing in its March budget that there would be a “7% cut to operating grants to universities, colleges, and technical institutes.”
This strikes me as a curious turn of events, for several reasons.
-Alberta’s top income tax rate (i.e. the provincial share) is a mere 10%. This is the lowest of any Canadian province or territory. By contrast, (Read more…)
Further to my earlier post on the OECD’s new data on employment performance across its 34 member countries (and Canada’s relatively poor ranking in that regard), another part of the OECD Employment Outlook 2013 that is also worth reading in detail is Chapter 2. It provides a thorough revision and updating of the OECD’s quantitative index of EPL intensity. It contains a useful summary of the mainstream literature regarding EPL costs and benefits (which would have benefited, however, from inclusion of some critical, heterodox voices), as well as a detailed review of the revised methodology behind the OECD (Read more…)
By Joe Fantauzzi@jjfantauzzi Key Findings:
– The development industry is clearly engaged in the political process at Brampton City Hall.
– 233 development companies and development-affiliated individuals were publicly disclosed to have contributed money to Brampton candidates in the 2010 municipal election.
– Of those 233 developer donors, 48 were discovered to have proposals in various stages in front of Brampton City Hall between December 12, 2010 and May 22, 2013, according to city council minutes.
– The interests of 20.6 per cent ─ or about one in five ─ of the companies and individuals (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Illuminated By Street Lamps: In Brampton, Few Recorded Development Votes After Developers Contribute To Political War Chests
The federal government never tires of boasting that Canada’s labour market has performed better than most other countries through the financial crisis and subsequent recession, and that the number of Canadians working today is greater than it was before the recession hit. That means we have fully recovered from the downturn, and the Tories are good economic managers, right? Wrong.
This trick is based on ignoring the fact that Canada’s population is growing, and relatively rapidly. Our working age population has grown by 1.75 million since 2008 (or just under 1.5% per year). So (Read more…)
The Ontario Human Rights Commission argues that employers’ rigid requirement for “Canadian experience” for new immigrants is, in some cases, “discrimination under Ontario’s Human Rights Code.”
The post Remove “Canadian experience” employment barrier: Ontario Human Rights Commission appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
Last week, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives released my policy brief on Saskatchewan job-creation. Using Statistics Canada figures, it demonstrated that “workforce growth has been almost identical during the premierships of Brad Wall and Lorne Calvert.” Unsurprisingly, the main explanatory variable for Saskatchewan employment appears to be commodity prices rather than the party in power.
The governing Saskatchewan Party need not have been particularly offended by this conclusion. However, its narrative is that the province was like East Germany under the NDP and that Wall has unleashed “unprecedented growth.”
So, Economy Minister Bill Boyd responded by accusing (Read more…)
So, the National Household Survey’s Portrait of Canada’s labour force is out, and I can’t help but think of Donald Rumsfeld’s known unknowns. We know that we don’t know anything about those who didn’t respond to the survey, or how they might be different from those that did. We also know that there are some discrepancies in terms of labour force data even at the national level when comparing the NHS to the LFS.
We know that the sample size for the NHS was 4.5 million households, with a 68.6% response rate. The LFS only samples 56,000 households, (Read more…)
by: CAW & Ryerson University | Press Release:
TORONTO, June 25, 2013 – Older immigrant workers who have been laid off are falling through the cracks of Canada’s employment system, with many of them ending up in temporary jobs with few benefits, finds a new study released today at Ryerson University’s Centre for Labour Management Relations at Ted Rogers School of Management.
“We were interested in finding out how this group of workers has managed since the plant closure five years ago and whether they have found stable work again,” says Winnie Ng, CAW-Sam Gindin Chair in Social Justice and Democracy and lead (Read more…)
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives has released my policy brief (PDF) on Saskatchewan employment growth. It is covered on the front pages of today’s Regina Leader-Post and Saskatoon StarPhoenix business sections. The press release follows:
Premier Wall’s Employment Record Lags Calvert and Blakeney
Regina – A new policy brief from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives’ Saskatchewan Office, The Great Wall Ties Chairman Calvert’s Five-Year Plan: Employment Growth in the New Saskatchewan, challenges the provincial government’s spin regarding job creation.
“Many of the Saskatchewan Party government’s much-vaunted employment records reflect seasonal fluctuations,” notes author Erin Weir, an economist (Read more…)
Out of Canada’s 33 Fathers of Confederation, only one went to university.1
It’s not that Nova Scotia’s Charles Tupper was the only intelligent one among them, other founders were businessmen, doctors, and lawyers, it’s that none of those jobs, and many others, did not require any post-secondary education.
The eduction jobs in the late 19th century did require was entirely made free shortly after confederation because provincial governments, though extremely small and limited, believed that their public schools should provide all the instruction necessary for citizens to obtain jobs in any sector, be it agriculture, engineering, manufacturing, commerce, medicine (Read more…)
What we are all looking for…is the readymade, competent man [sic]; the man whom some one else has trained. It is only when we fully realize that our duty, as well as our opportunity, lies in systematically cooperating to train and to make this competent man, instead of in hunting for a man whom some […]
Brian Lee Crowley’s latest column shows he’s a glass-half-full kinda guy. We shouldn’t be worried about unemployment because a) it’s old-fashioned, b) Boomers had it worse (and now they’re getting old) c) we’re doing better than the U.S., and d) it’s really only young people and immigrants that are unemployed.
This is a relief.
So I shouldn’t worry that Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey indicates that real average hourly wages have risen by only twenty cents between 2009 and 2012 (an annualized growth rate of 0.3%). Or, that at the same time, real median hourly wages have (Read more…) fallen, indicating that any wage growth is limited to a few at the top end.
Crowley cites vague evidence from internet job advertisements to point out that the number of jobs going unfilled are rising fast.
That’s good news for Canada’s 1.3 million job seekers. They had been discouraged by Statistics . . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Crowley’s Red Hot Labour Market
Below is the summary for our latest Climate Justice Project report, Closing the Loop: Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Creating Green Jobs through Zero Waste in BC (I recommend checking the much prettier full paper, stand-alone summary, and awesome infographic by Sam Bradd on the website). Closing the Loop was a complex and challenging project that made my head spin, but in the end is one I am really proud of. For me it puts in place a key foundational piece of the Climate Justice Project, and bridges the ecological economics that I had first encountered in grad school two decades ago with all of the
. . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Closing the Loop: Zero Waste, GHG Emissions and Green Jobs in BC
The Nova Scotia provincial government is set to introduce its promised balanced budget this year. The Nova Scotia Alternative Budget, released today, proposes some concrete choices rooted in Nova Scotia communities. Rather than pay down debt, the NS-APB prioritizes balancing the social debt threatening Nova Scotia.
Can a budget really be considered balanced when unemployment is 9.3%, and 47,000 Nova Scotians are ready, willing, and actively looking for work that isn’t there?
The recent recession hit some parts of Canada harder than others, and Nova Scotia is still feeling the effects. The Nova Scotia economy has picked up
. . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Back to Balance in Nova Scotia
By: Kate McInturff | Behind The Numbers: The Finance Minister got a new pair of shoes. Canadians got a new federal budget. And women in Canada got another haircut. Budget 2013 is all about Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! And who wouldn’t like a job. Maybe some training. Maybe even a full-time job. [...]
The post New Shoes and a Haircut: Budget 2013 not so pretty for women in Canada appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.
When the federal Lobbying Act came into force in 2008, Vic Toews, then the President of the Treasury Board, declared the legislation “increased accountability in Ottawa” and provided “a more open and transparent government for all Canadians.” The law, Mr. Toews added, would give Canadians more information about who is attempting to influence public policy.Not everyone agrees. Award-winning business journalist Andrew Nikiforuk has called the Lobbying Act “ineffectual” because, among other reasons, it does not require corporations to explain publicly how much money they are spending on their lobbying efforts.Clearly, there
. . . → Read More: Illuminated By Street Lamps: Canadian lobbyists. Who They Are and What They Do.
What not to say in an interview if you’re on EI, and other nightmares
The latest detail to emerge about the recent changes to EI is from the Digest of Benefit Entitlement Principles. The Digest is a guide to enforcing Employment Insurance, with definitions of key terms, and elaborates on expectations of EI claimants and penalties for errors.
In Chapter 9, Refusal of Employment, Service Canada outlines several actions that are equivalent to refusing employment.
Section 9.2.3 states that “a refusal of employment occurs where the claimant advises the employer that they are available for only a limited (Read more…)
The glaring contrast between employment numbers, and the unemployment rate, was highlighted by today’s labour force numbers from Statistics Canada (capably dissected elsewhere on this blog by Angella MacEwan).
Paid employment (ie. employees) declined by 46,000. Total employment (including self-employment) fell by 22,000. Yet the unemployment rate fell to 7% — its lowest level since late 2008.
Fewer people were working, yet the unemployment rate declined. What gives?
Especially during times of economic weakness, the official unemployment rate is a bad measure of the state of the overall labour market, for familiar reasons: to qualify as (Read more…)
After five months of job gains, the job market turned dismal in January. Officially, the unemployment rate fell from 7.1% to 7.0%, the lowest it’s been since December 2008. This is despite a loss of 45,800 jobs (not counting self-employment). The explanation is an out flux of discouraged workers from the labour market, which caused the ‘real’ unemployment rate (R8) to jump from 9.4% to 10.7%.
Gains in self-employment masked the job losses, as there was an increase of nearly 24,000 self-employed persons in January, for an official loss of 22,000, nearly all in full-time positions. Ontario suffered
. . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Job Market Worsens in January
Testimony to the Joint Review Panel on the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project
By Marc Lee, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives January 16, 2013
My name is Marc Lee, and I have served as an economist for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives for more than 14 years. Most recently I have been Senior Economist and the Co-Director of the Climate Justice Project, a multi-year SSHRC-funded research project with the University of British Columbia, in collaboration with a large team of academics and community groups.
A year ago, Natural Resource Minister Joe Oliver’s open letter stated that the Northern Gateway Pipeline
. . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Marc’s Enbridge Testimony
This article was published in an abridged form today in the National Post. http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/12/21/armine-yalnizyan-sorry-andrew-coyne-but-income-inequality-is-a-real-problem/ I like this opening better so I posted it here.
You couldn’t have made it through 2012 without running into a story about income inequality. Chances are, it made you think about how you fit into the story. That’s “entirely constructive”, as Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney called the awakening triggered by the global Occupy movement.
A year later, some people think it’s time you go back to sleep. A new debate is emerging in Canada: is inequality worth discussing at
. . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Why The Income Inequality Deniers Are Wrong
As we close out 2012, BC finds itself in some precarious economic waters. To recap, a massive housing bubble that built up through the naughties (2000s) finally burst in 2008, feeding a financial crisis, as extremely loose (some would say fraudulent) lending practices pushed housing prices up to spectacular, never-seen-before levels, and created a plague of toxic mortgage-based assets. The inevitable collapse of that bubble triggered our current context of depression economics; that is, a major drop in the value of housing assets on the balance sheets of many millions, making people poorer and undercutting their other consumption (in the
. . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: State of the BC Economy