Community Counselling & Resource Centre

Peterborough jobless rate of 9.6% in July was the highest in Canada

August 4th, 2017

The jobless rate for Peterborough jumped to 9.6 per cent in July from 8.5 per cent in June making it by far the highest of Canada's 34 census metropolitan areas, Statistics Canada reported Friday.

Peterborough's June rate had been the second highest of the census metropolitan areas, when it was up from 6.7 per cent in May, but now Peterborough has climbed past Calgary.

Meanwhile the national unemployment rate fell to 6.3 per cent in July from 6.5 per cent in June, while Ontario's jobless rate also dropped to 6.1 per cent from 6.4 per cent.

Nearby, Oshawa's jobless rate rose to 5.9 per cent in July from 5.7 per cent; Kingston's edged up to 5.5 per cent from 5.4 per cent while Barrie's jumped to 6.3 per cent from 5.7 per cent.

Despite Peterborough's high jobless rate, more people were actually working in Peterborough in July than a month earlier or in July 2016. The local labour force has also grown over the past year.

Peterborough had 200 more people working in July compared to June and 2,200 more working compared to a year ago. But there were 800 more people looking for work than a month earlier and 2,800 more than July 2016.

Peterborough's adjusted labour force (the number of adults available to work) stood at 67,000 in July, up from 62,000 in July 2016. Of those 60,600 were employed and 6,400 were unemployed, compared to 58,400 and 3,600 a year ago. The increase in the labour force led to an increase in the labour participation rate (the proportion of working age people working or looking for work) over the past year to 63.9 per cent in July, up sharply from 59.3 per cent a year ago.

The Peterborough CMA includes the city, the four surrounding townships of Cavan Monaghan, Selwyn, Douro-Dummer and Otonabee-South Monaghan, along with Curve Lake and Hiawatha First Nations.

Statistics Canada jobless figures are based on surveys adjusted to a three-month rolling average.