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Unemployment rate was at 4% in the Québec City CMA in July

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  • The Québec City CMA recorded an unemployment rate of 4% in July, a 0.4 percentage point decrease compared to June. This allowed the CMA to reach second rank in Canada.
  • The decrease in the labour force, 0.9% higher than the 0.5% decrease in employment, explains this decline in the unemployment rate.
  • The contraction of the labour pool in July once again reduced the number of jobs in Québec City. The area accounted 436,400 jobs, 2,300 less than in June.
  • In the province, 4,700 jobs were added on a monthly basis in July. This good performance took the unemployment rate down under 6% for the first time in 40 years, reaching 5.8%.


The need of labour force remains very high in the Québec area, and the low unemployment rate, at 4% in July, illustrates that situation. However, the region must deal with a decline of its labour force, down 0.9% last month compared to June. In that respect, 4,300 people left the labour force last month. This situation has a direct impact on the evolution in the number of jobs. In July, the area accounted 436,400 jobs, 2,300 less than in June. Moreover, the number of unemployed workers is also decreasing, totalizing 18,400 last month, 2,000 less than in June.

There is much at stake for the Québec area. On the one hand, it must deal with businesses ever increasing the job offers in order to ensure their growth and the renewal of their work force to compensate employees retiring, among other things. This pressure comes from all industry sectors, and the launch of new major real estate projects will do nothing to reduce the needs. On the other hand, potential candidates are more and more scarce. Among workers aged 25 to 54, and aged 55 years and over, the unemployment rate fell below 4% in July, at 2.8% and 3.9% respectively (non-deseasonalized data). The two age groups are getting attention, since they represent more than 86% of the labour force in the region. Their scarcity could have direct consequences on the number of potential candidates to fill full-time jobs that require a certain number of years of experience.

Employment data from July show, in turn, that the area must pursue its efforts to get the diversity of job openings known in order to attract new job seekers. These actions are also essential to the growth of the working population

Louis Gagnon
Senior Economist
Québec International

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