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Quebec City Region adds 2,000 jobs in October as unemployment holds steady at 4.8% HighlightsCommentary

October was a good month for the labour market in the Quebec City CMA. The region recorded at total of 415,000 jobs, up 2,000 from September, putting an end to six consecutive monthly decreases and pushing total employment back to a higher level than that recorded in August. In addition, the region posted a 4.8% unemployment rate for the fifth month in a row.


  • According to Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey, the Quebec City census metropolitan area (CMA) added 2,000 jobs in October (compared with September) for a total of 415,000 jobs.
  • For the fifth consecutive month, unemployment in the Quebec City region held steady at 4.8%, one of the lowest rates in Canada.
  • The region ended six consecutive monthly decreases in the total number of jobs thanks to strong performances in all sectors.
  • In the province of Quebec, the number of jobs rose by 34,100 on a monthly basis. Unemployment stood at 7.5%, down from 7.6% in September.


The services sector showed signs of improvement in October after a lacklustre showing since late spring. The number of workers also grew in several other sectors, including finance and insurance; professional, scientific and technical services; public administration; retail and transportation/warehousing. The manufacturing and construction industries maintained their pattern of stability, which dates back to the early summer.  October’s performance was also based on gains in full-time employment, while the part-time situation continued to decline.

Based solely on October’s performance, the region will not be able to offset the net decrease in total job numbers over the past six months. However, the recent gains may generate some forward momentum, ensuring that 2014 starts off on the right track. Low unemployment serves as a reminder that the demand for qualified labour is still strong throughout the region. In this regard, some 15 local companies will be traveling to France in late November to recruit foreign workers.

Louis Gagnon
Senior Economist
Quebec International