Sault Unemployment Rate Drops


Sault Ste. Marie saw a drop in the unemployment rate last month, according to data released from Stats Canada Labour Force Survey and the Algoma Workforce Investment Corporation.

Sault Ste. Marie’s unemployment rate in November was 5.2%, down from 7.5% in October. Sault Ste. Marie’s overall unemployment rate is slightly lower than both the Provincial and National rates.

The unemployment rate for those 25 to 54 years of age is 5.4%, which is more in line with the Provincial and National rates.

Meanwhile those aged 15 to 24 are finding challenges in securing employment. The unemployment rate for those 15 to 24 years of age is 10.7%. The numbers are somewhat of a puzzle as job postings increase to that age bracket in retail and service industries.

The unemployment rate for those 55 years and over is 3.1%, which is significantly lower than recent months and an indication of an even tighter labour market for older workers.
Sault Ste. Marie’s Participation and Employment Rates continue to be considerably lower (over 10%) than Provincial and National rates.

Since both the Participation and Employment Rates are based on the overall population (aged 15 and above), the lower rates are mainly attributable to the fact that Sault Ste. Marie has a relatively older population and more people out of the workforce (retired).

Comparing the rates by age group shows that the Participation and Employment rates for the core working aged population (25 to 54) are more in line with Provincial and National rates.

Both the Participation and Employment Rates are at previous lows which marked the beginning of a climb in the rates. Since we have a high number of job postings, we would hope to see the Employment and Participation Rates to increase in the coming months. If they don’t, we will continue to have a tight labour market in which some employers will have challenges filling open positions.
Overall employment rose slightly to 33,000 jobs in October.Employment in the Goods-Producing sector increased slightly driven by an increase in Manufacturing Sectors.
Employment in Services-Producing held steady. Gains in Education were countered by a continued drop in Healthcare and Retail employment.
Comparing current employment levels to November 2020 and November 2019, overall employment is 12% lower than November 2019 (pre-COVID)Not surprisingly, Retail and Culture/Recreation are among the sectors with the largest drop in employment.
Job postings continue to be strong for Sault Ste. Marie .The number of Job postings in November 2021 are almost double the November 2020 postings.

An increase in Retail related job postings could be a sign of higher levels of employment in the Retail sector to come.

Similarly, there was an increase in demand for Cooks, Food Counter and Kitchen Helpers along with consistent postings for Healthcare relate jobs.

-with files supplied by Algoma Workforce Investment Corporation