/ Updated on

Stable labour market in October, but an increase of 13,400 jobs over 12 months

The labour market in the Québec City census metropolitan area (CMA) remained stable from September to October. However, it registered a peak in employment for this period of the year.


  1. Over one year, the Québec City region registered higher growth in employment (+13,400) than in its population (+8,500).

  2. In October, the unemployment rate continued the downwards trend started in July, settling at 2.8%. This is the second-lowest rate in Canada.

  3. The participation and employment rates showed little movement on a monthly basis, standing at 67.1% and 65.2%, respectively.

  4. Comparable data show that the labour market also remained relatively stable this month in the province of Quebec (+0.2%) and Canada (+0.2%).


Evolution of employment in the Québec City CMA over one year

Sources: Statistics Canada. Table 14-10-0380-01, and Québec International.


The labour market remains tight

Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey (LFS) revealed that the unemployment rate was 2.8% in the Québec City CMA in October 2023, the second lowest in Canada. This is the third consecutive drop in the unemployment rate in the region in 2023. In October of last year, this rate was 3.1% in Québec City. 

The participation and employment rates remained stable in October 2023, at 67.1% and 65.2%. The indicators of market participation improved compared to the same period last year, when the participation rate was 66.1% and the employment rate was 64%. However, these remain below the record levels registered in 2019.

Employment growth over one year

Compared to September, the market remained stable at 458,100 jobs in October. This is a record number for the month of October in the region. Comparable data show that the Quebec and Canadian labour markets also registered only small variations in October 2023, reaching a peak in employment for this time of the year in both the province of Quebec and Canada. 

Compared to last year, there was an increase of 13,400 jobs (+3.0%). This performance is higher than in the province of Quebec (+2.3%) and Canada (+2.6%). Among the eight major Canadian CMAs, Québec City registered the fifth-highest increase year over year, ahead of Montréal (+2.8%), Calgary (+2.6%) and Winnipeg (+2.1%).

Non-seasonally adjusted data show that the accommodation and food service sector and the manufacturing sector were those with the highest growth between October 2022 and October 2023. Conversely, the health and public administration sectors experienced setbacks. Furthermore, over the period, full-time employment grew slightly, while part-time employment increased significantly.

Émile Émond
Senior Economist
 Québec International