Labour Market Bulletin - Newfoundland and Labrador: June 2022

This Labour Market Bulletin provides an analysis of Labour Force Survey results for the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, including the regions of Avalon Peninsula, South Coast-Burin Peninsula and Notre Dame-Central Bonavista Bay, and West Coast-Northern Peninsula-Labrador.

Overview

Employment increased for the fifth consecutive quarter, while the size of the labour force dropped slightly. The result was the lowest quarterly unemployment rate on record.

Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly labour force statistics
Seasonally adjusted quarterly data 2nd quarter
2022
1st quarter
2022
2nd quarter
2021
Quarterly variation Yearly variation
Number % Number %
Population 15 + ('000) 447.7 446.7 445.0 1.0 0.2 2.7 0.6
Labour force ('000) 255.8 257.1 253.8 -1.3 -0.5 2.0 0.8
Employment ('000) 229.6 224.6 220.9 5.0 2.2 8.7 3.9
Full-time ('000) 190.5 191.8 185.9 -1.3 -0.7 4.6 2.5
Part-time ('000) 39.1 32.7 35.1 6.4 19.6 4.0 11.4
Unemployment ('000) 26.2 32.6 32.9 -6.4 -19.6 -6.7 -20.4
Unemployment rate (%) 10.2 12.7 12.9 -2.5 - -2.7 -
Participation rate (%) 57.1 57.6 57.1 -0.5 - 0.0 -
Employment rate (%) 51.3 50.3 49.7 1.0 - 1.6 -

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - Table 14-10-0287

Historically, a fall in major project spending contributed to a sustained reduction in employment beginning in 2013. This raised the quarterly unemployment rate to a six-year high of 15.6% in the fourth quarter of 2016. This rate remained near 15% over the next six quarters as employment and labour force levels remained steady. In the second half of 2018, a decline in labour force size reduced the unemployment rate, where it remained steady until pandemic-related job losses elevated the rate through most of 2020. While labour market conditions improved in Q4 of 2020, employment fell in the following quarter due to a large COVID-19 outbreak. Since then, employment has grown faster than the labour force, pushing the unemployment rate downward.

Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment and unemployment rate
Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment and unemployment rate
Show data table: Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment and unemployment rate
Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment and unemployment rate
Unemployment rate (%) Employment ('000)
2Q2016 12.6 235.8
3Q2016 13.4 233.2
4Q2016 15.6 226.7
1Q2017 15.1 224.8
2Q2017 14.8 223.8
3Q2017 15.1 219.4
4Q2017 15.0 224.4
1Q2018 14.9 223.1
2Q2018 14.9 222.8
3Q2018 14.1 225.8
4Q2018 12.5 225.4
1Q2019 12.3 229.0
2Q2019 12.4 228.1
3Q2019 12.3 226.9
4Q2019 12.1 224.1
1Q2020 12.4 221.7
2Q2020 16.5 197.8
3Q2020 14.7 212.8
4Q2020 13.1 222.5
1Q2021 13.7 216.0
2Q2021 12.9 220.9
3Q2021 12.5 221.3
4Q2021 12.4 222.5
1Q2022 12.7 224.6
2Q2022 10.2 229.6

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada generally experienced small, consistent employment gains, whereas employment levels in Newfoundland and Labrador were more volatile. The onset of the pandemic caused massive job losses at both the provincial and national levels in the second quarter of 2020. While the two quarters that followed brought employment gains at both levels, Newfoundland and Labrador had a sharp loss in the first quarter of 2021 as a COVID-19 outbreak resulted in widespread restrictions and business closures.  Since then, both the province and country have experienced varying degrees of quarterly growth, with each area having employment rise by approximately 6% over the past five quarters.

Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth
Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth
Show data table: Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth
Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth
Newfoundland and Labrador Canada
2Q2016 2.0% 0.2%
3Q2016 -1.1% 0.2%
4Q2016 -2.8% 0.6%
1Q2017 -0.9% 0.7%
2Q2017 -0.4% 0.4%
3Q2017 -2.0% 0.5%
4Q2017 2.3% 0.7%
1Q2018 -0.6% 0.2%
2Q2018 -0.1% 0.2%
3Q2018 1.4% 0.4%
4Q2018 -0.2% 0.6%
1Q2019 1.6% 0.8%
2Q2019 -0.4% 0.7%
3Q2019 -0.5% 0.2%
4Q2019 -1.3% 0.1%
1Q2020 -1.1% -1.3%
2Q2020 -10.8% -11.3%
3Q2020 7.6% 8.3%
4Q2020 4.5% 2.4%
1Q2021 -2.9% 0.4%
2Q2021 2.3% 0.6%
3Q2021 0.2% 1.7%
4Q2021 0.5% 1.5%
1Q2022 0.9% 0.8%
2Q2022 2.2% 1.0%

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey

Most of the employment growth over the past quarter has been among males 25 years and older, with a gain of 3,400 jobs. Over the same period the labour force for this group dropped (-1,800), resulting in its lowest quarterly unemployment rate since 1989. The unemployment rate for females of this age group declined slightly over the quarter, due to a small increase in employment.

The youth (aged 15 to 24 years) unemployment rate decreased from the previous quarter, as employment outpaced labour force growth. Over the past two quarters, the youth unemployment rate fell by 3.7 percentage points, as employment rose to its highest level since 2017.

Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly unemployment rates, by gender and age
Seasonally adjusted data 2nd quarter
2022 (%)
1st quarter
2022 (%)
2nd quarter
2021 (%)
Quarterly variation
(% points)
Yearly variation
(% points)
Total 10.2 12.7 12.9 -2.4 -2.7
25 years and over 9.8 12.5 12.4 -2.7 -2.6
Men - 25 years and over 11.3 15.7 15.4 -4.3 -4.1
Women - 25 years and over 8.2 9.1 9.1 -0.9 -1.0
15 to 24 years 13.2 14.1 16.2 -0.9 -3.1
Men - 15 to 24 years 16.7 17.9 20.3 -1.2 -3.7
Women - 15 to 24 years 9.5 9.5 11.6 0.0 -2.1

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - Table 14-10-0287

Employment by industry

Employment growth since the previous quarter was driven by the services-producing sector (+4,900), with most industries gaining jobs. Accommodation and food services (+1,800) had its strongest quarterly increase since the end of 2012. Transportation and warehousing (+1,000) grew for the fourth consecutive quarter, and public administration (+800) reached a record high. However, business, building and other support services (-1,100) fell to its lowest quarterly level since Q3 of 2018.

Employment in the goods-producing sector showed little change for the second consecutive quarter. However, results were quite mixed in the sector. Construction (+900) increased for the fourth quarter in a row, matching its employment level in Q1 2020, just prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, manufacturing (-1,200) had a notable drop. This industry has lost 1,900 jobs over the past two quarters.

Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly labour force statistics, by industry
Seasonally adjusted data ('000) 2nd quarter
2022
1st quarter
2022
2nd quarter
2021
Quarterly variation Yearly variation
Number % Number %
Total employed, all industries 229.6 224.6 220.9 5.0 2.2 8.7 3.9
Goods-producing sector 45.2 45.0 43.9 0.1 0.3 1.3 2.9
Agriculture 1.2 1.4 1.5 -0.2 -16.7 -0.3 -22.2
Forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas 14.4 14.0 13.1 0.4 2.6 1.3 9.9
Utilities 1.5 1.3 2.1 0.2 17.9 -0.6 -27.0
Construction 18.9 18.0 15.8 0.9 5.0 3.1 19.4
Manufacturing 9.2 10.3 11.4 -1.2 -11.3 -2.2 -19.6
Services-producing sector 184.5 179.5 177.1 4.9 2.7 7.4 4.2
Trade 38.0 37.4 36.5 0.6 1.6 1.5 4.0
Transportation and warehousing 10.3 9.3 7.9 1.0 10.7 2.4 30.3
Finance, insurance, real estate and leasing 6.3 5.4 7.1 0.9 16.0 -0.8 -11.3
Professional, scientific and technical services 11.2 11.4 10.4 -0.2 -1.8 0.8 7.3
Business, building and other support services 5.8 6.9 7.5 -1.1 -16.4 -1.8 -23.5
Educational services 18.4 17.9 16.0 0.5 3.0 2.4 15.0
Health care and social assistance 43.6 43.3 44.7 0.3 0.6 -1.1 -2.5
Information, culture and recreation 7.5 6.9 7.3 0.6 8.7 0.2 3.2
Accommodation and food services 14.4 12.6 11.5 1.8 14.6 3.0 25.9
Other services 8.1 8.4 7.9 -0.3 -3.2 0.2 2.1
Public administration 20.8 20.0 20.1 0.8 4.0 0.7 3.6

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - Table 14-10-0355

Regional analysis

Compared to a year earlier, employment growth was concentrated in one economic region. However, all three regions of the province experienced a drop in their unemployment rates.

Quarterly employment on the Avalon Peninsula increased for the fifth consecutive quarter, mainly in full-time positions. The labour force also grew, but could not match the gain in jobs. This resulted in a lower unemployment rate. Job growth in the most recent quarter was the strongest on record going back to 2006, The services-producing sector (+8,300) had most of the job growth compared to a year earlier, led by educational services (+3,300), wholesale and retail trade (+2,100), and accommodation and food services (+2,000). However, finance, insurance, real estate and leasing lost jobs for the fourth consecutive quarter. In the goods-producing sector, construction showed impressive growth (+3,800).

The unemployment rate declined in the South Coast–Burin Peninsula and Notre Dame-Central-Bonavista Bay economic region. The labour force had a sharper loss compared to employment. Growth in the services-producing sector (+1,000) was outweighed by a drop in the goods-producing sector (-2,000). Construction (-1,400) and manufacturing (-1,200) had the deepest losses, while the strongest gains were forestry, fishing, mining and oil and gas (+1,000), as well as accommodation and food services (+900).

In the West Coast–Northern Peninsula–Labrador region, the labour force fell faster than employment, resulting in a lower unemployment rate. Part-time employment gains were outweighed by full-time losses. The services producing sector led the decline, with the strongest drop being in health care and social assistance (-1,800). The largest source of growth was in transportation and warehousing, with 1,100 more jobs than a year earlier.

Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly labour force statistics, by economic region
3-Months Moving Averages Seasonally Unadjusted Data Employment Unemployment rate
2nd quarter
2022
('000)
2nd quarter
2021
('000)
Yearly
variation
(%)
2nd quarter
2022
(%)
2nd quarter
2021
(%)
Yearly
variation
(% points)
Newfoundland and Labrador 230.7 221.3 4.2 10.8 13.8 -3.0
Economic regions
Avalon Peninsula 137.3 126.1 8.9 8.0 10.6 -2.6
South Coast-Burin Peninsula and Notre Dame-Central Bonavista Bay 50.8 51.8 -1.9 14.3 18.3 -4.0
West Coast-Northern Peninsula-Labrador 42.6 43.4 -1.8 14.6 17.0 -2.4

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - Table 14-10-0387

Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth, by economic region Q2-2021 to Q2-2022
Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth, by economic region Q2-2021 to Q2-2022
Show data table: Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth, by economic region Q2-2021 to Q2-2022
Newfoundland and Labrador quarterly employment growth, by economic region Q2-2021 to Q2-2022
Economic region Percentage
Avalon Peninsula 8.9%
South Coast-Burin Peninsula and Notre Dame-Central Bonavista Bay -1.9%
West Coast-Northern Peninsula-Labrador -1.8%

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey

Note

In preparing this document, the authors have taken care to provide clients with labour market information that is timely and accurate at the time of publication. Since labour market conditions are dynamic, some of the information presented here may have changed since this document was published. Users are encouraged to also refer to other sources for additional information on the local economy and labour market. Information contained in this document does not necessarily reflect official policies of Employment and Social Development Canada.

Prepared by: Labour Market Analysis Directorate, Service Canada, Atlantic Region
For further information, please contact the LMI team.
For information on the Labour Force Survey, please visit the Statistics Canada website.

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