December data is now available from the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (SEPH), which provides monthly information on payroll employment, earnings and hours worked in Canada, the provinces and the territories.
Some of the information included in the most recent survey:
Payroll employment changes in December vary by province
Payroll employment increased in five provinces in December and decreased in four. Increases were in Ontario (+0.6%; +37,800), Quebec (+0.4%; +13,500), New Brunswick (+0.7%; +2,100), Newfoundland and Labrador (+0.6%; +1,100), and Prince Edward Island (+1.1%; +700). In contrast, payroll employment declined in Manitoba (-0.9%; -5,400), Alberta (-0.3%; -5,200), Saskatchewan (-0.5%; -2,400) and Nova Scotia (-0.3%; -1,400).
In December, the three Maritime provinces were closest to pre-COVID-19 employment levels, led by New Brunswick, at 0.5% below the level in February, followed by Prince Edward Island (-2.5%) and Nova Scotia (-3.9%).
Rise in payroll employment driven by services-producing sector
In December, payroll employment rose in the services-producing sector (+0.2%; +31,900), nearly offsetting the loss in the previous month. December gains were spread across a number of sectors but largest in health care and social assistance (+22,400), and transportation and warehousing (+10,500). At the same time, there were notable losses in accommodation and food services (-32,900); retail trade (-5,600); and arts, entertainment and recreation (-3,600).