Alberta’s unemployment rate drops to 11.8 per cent in August as fewer residents search for work

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The recovery plan includes investing $10 billion in infrastructure, reducing the corporate tax rate to eight per cent in an accelerated timeline and creating the Invest Alberta Corporation to promote the province on the global stage.

But NDP Opposition critic Deron Bilous argued the reduction in the amount of Albertans looking for work is proof the government’s plan isn’t working.

“They’re disappointing numbers and unfortunately Alberta is struggling and this government is not doing their job in providing confidence and people are seeing they don’t have a credible plan to help the economic recovery in Alberta,” he told Postmedia. “People are giving up looking for work because they don’t have faith in this government’s policies.”

The unemployment rate in Alberta’s two major cities dropped by more than a percentage point, even though they remain two of the highest across Canada. Edmonton’s unemployment rate dropped to 13.6 per cent in August, down from 15 per cent in July. Calgary’s rate dropped by 1.1 percentage points to 14.4 per cent — the highest unemployment rate of Canada’s big cities. Only Toronto is in between the two Alberta cities, with a rate of 13.9 per cent.

Unlike the province as a whole, labour force grew with an increase of about 15,000 people in Edmonton and 20,000 in Calgary. Edmonton gained about 24,400 positions in August and has recovered to 91 per cent of pre-COVID levels.

Across the country, employment rose by 246,000 in August and the labour force increased by 109,000 people. Canada’s unemployment rate dropped to 10.2 per cent, a decrease of 0.7 percentage points from July.

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