Help-wanted index climbs

Dec 06, 2012

Alberta posted the second largest increase in October in the Conference Board of Canada’s Help-Wanted Index, behind only Saskatchewan. On Tuesday, the board said the overall index rose nine points in October. The gain more than offset the losses recorded in the previous two months and suggests more job growth in the near term. The index is based on the seasonally-adjusted number of new, unduplicated jobs posted online during the month across 79 Canadian job-posting websites. Every provincial index posted a gain in October. “Saskatchewan’s index continues to be highly volatile on a month-to-month basis. After posting the biggest drop of any province in September, the index rebounded in October with the largest gain, climbing 31.2 points,” said the board. “Despite this volatility, we can still see an upward trend in Saskatchewan’s index since the beginning of the year. Among the provinces, Alberta’s index posted the second-largest gain in October, with an increase of 12.5 points – almost completely offsetting the decline recorded the previous month.” But despite the overall rise in the index, the board said Canadian employers continue to be cautious when it comes to hiring, and the overall trend in the index suggests that employment gains are not likely to be significant. “The labour market posted a weak gain of 2,000 jobs in October; and based on the index, that number will rise – but only to a still tepid gain of 7,400 jobs in November,” it said. According to Statistics Canada, Alberta’s unemployment rate in October of 4.5 per cent was the lowest in the country. The federal agency said 5,000 new jobs were created in the province in October and there have been 36,500 new jobs created in Alberta in 2012. Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald Published: Wednesday, December 05, 2012