The number of unemployed dropped to 1161.3 thousand in February 2019 from 1162 thousand in January while employment rose to 18929.8 thousand from 18873.9 thousand in the prior month. The labour force participation rate rose to 65.8 percent in February from 65.6 percent January, beating market forecasts of 65.4 percent. It is the highest rate since December 2017.
Ontario was the sole province with a notable employment gain in February (+37,000). Employment declined in Manitoba (-3,300), and was little changed in the remaining provinces.
More people were employed in professional, scientific and technical services (+18,000); public administration (+14,000); natural resources (+8,000); and agriculture (+6,000). At the same time, there were fewer workers in accommodation and food services (-14,000), as well as transportation and warehousing (-11,000).
In both the public and private sectors, there was little change in the number of employees in February. When combined, the total number of employees in the two sectors increased by 41,000. Also, self-employment was little changed.
Employment rose for both women and men aged 15 to 24 (+29,000), while it was little changed for the other demographic groups.