What a difference a year makes

Looking at the labour force data for June 2008 compared to last year shows some stark changes.

In June 2007, employment over the previous 12 months was up by 8,500 people – the best growth in Canada. In June 2008, employment has declined 2,700 people from June 2007 – the only province in Canada to register a decline in total employment from June 2007 to June 2008.

The unemployment rate in June 2008 increased to 9.7% from an amazing 6.8% last year in June. That is an over 3 percentage point increase in just 12 months.

But the Minister soldiers on. Is it just me or are the press releases getting shorter and shorter? But December 2008, you will get a one line press release: Minister pleased with employment numbers, darn it, stop askin’.

I don’t know exactly why the employment numbers are dropping. I was eating flies in some cubby hole in the Yukon when Statistics Canada published the numbers so I suspect the local papers got a boilerplate quote from Samuel LeBreton or someone from Statistics Canada.

The bottom line here is the trending on this is bad and isn’t improving.