- In November, the number of unemployed people dropped by 4,700 in the region (-26.7%).
- There was a drop of 1,600 jobs (-0.4%) in the Québec City CMA in November, the first decrease after four months of sustained growth.
- Statistics Canada estimates that the labour force shrank to 456,100 people in the Québec City CMA in November, a drop of 6,300 people (-1.4%) compared to the previous month.
- Comparable data for the province of Quebec shows a slight increase of 25,500 jobs (+0.6%), while the unemployment rate dropped to 5.3%.
The available data for the Québec City census metropolitan area (CMA) was given special statistical treatment (three-month moving average) due to the small sample size, which has the effect of mitigating the large fluctuations in the data. Thus, data collected in September and October influenced the estimations published for November. Please also note that we use comparable data for the province of Quebec and the other CMAs in this document.
November data from Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey (LFS) shows the labour market conditions during the week of November 7 to 13, 2021. Although government announcements have less and less impact on the variations in employment, the labour market conditions did evolve from October to November. For example, federal support measures for employers and individuals such as the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) ended on October 23 and were replaced by more targeted programs. Additionally, the American border reopened to non-essential travel on November 8.
Employment is relatively stable
In November, there were 443,200 people employed in the Québec City CMA. Statistics Canada’s data shows a drop of 1,600 people employed (-0.4%) compared to the previous publication. This decrease follows four months of sustained growth in the labour market. Since August, the region’s employment level has been consistently higher than in February 2020 (434,700).
Shrinking labour force
During the reference week for November 2021, there were 456,100 people active in the labour force in the Québec City CMA, a monthly decrease of 6,300 people (-1.4%). This number is slightly higher than before the pandemic (February 2020) but still lower than in November 2019 (464,200).
The participation rate, which measures the participation of people aged 15 and over in the labour market, dropped to 66.2% in November this year, a level similar to November 2020 (66.4%) and lower than in 2019 (68%). If the region’s participation had been the same as two years ago, there would be 12,700 more people in the labour market in Québec City. The employment rate, which measures the proportion of those aged 15 and over who are employed, had little variation, reaching 64.2% in November. This is more than at the same time last year (63.4%) but less than in November 2019 (65.6%).
Record unemployment rate for November
The higher decline in the labour force than in employment has brought the region’s unemployment rate down to 2.8%, the lowest rate ever registered for the month of November based on the available series of data. The region once again maintains the lowest unemployment rate in Canada. In November, there were 12,900 unemployed people in the region, 31% less than before the pandemic. Unemployment remains higher in Montréal (+9.2%) and the province of Quebec as a whole (+7.4%).