Rolling the dice

Lots of interesting stuff going on these days. I see the Magnetic Hill area in Moncton will get New Brunswick’s casino. I’m not a huge fan of these facilities as they tend to just divert NBers entertainment spending (and unfortunately in some cases non-discretionary spending) from other endeaveors. However, I am assured by folks close to the project that they expect to claw back at least a few thousand New Brunswickers who would have patronized the Halifax casino each year. They are also hoping to attract tourists – but I think the jury is out on that.

I see the labour market report is out for April 2008. Another tepid month for employment growth. The economy added 1,000 jobs but lost 1,000 full time jobs (the growth was in part time). Since January of this year, total employment is up slightly but full time employment is down 1.3% – the worst performance in the country. The rise in part time employment is problematic. I appreciate there is a important role for part time jobs in the economy (for students and others that need it) but it does very little to help with self-sufficiency. See the chart below for details.