Quebec unemployment rate drops to lowest since 1976
Published Friday, August 4, 2017 2:56PM EDT
Last Updated Friday, August 4, 2017 6:40PM EDT
New figures from Statistics Canada paint a rosy economic picture across the country but especially in Quebec, where the unemployment rate dipped to its lowest point since 1976.
According to the new data, Quebec’s unemployment rate stood at 5.8 percent at the end of July. That’s the lowest the provincial rate has been since StatsCan began publishing such figures.
The drop was the result of a boost in the number of Quebecers employed in full-time jobs – that number has risen by 124,000 in the past 12 months.
Members of Premier Philippe Couillard’s administration took to Twitter to boast of the numbers, including employment minister Francois Blais.
The Montreal Economic Institute said the provincial government should toot its own horn, with Mathieu Bedard saying the government has done a great job keeping the economy on track.
"Reducing public debt, reducing public spending, is always good for the economy and helping the private sector get more jobs," said Bedard.
"The employment figures are also very good so it's a real improvement. The economy is really doing better."
Unlike Ontario, where public spending has increased, the refusal in recent years of Quebec's finance minister to increase spending more than the inflation rate has paid off.
"Our unemployment is lower than Ontario for the first time in history," said Bedard. "It's very exciting."
The headhunting firm of Groom and Associates has seen a steady demand for work in Quebec and elsewhere, especially in I.T., sales, and pharmaceutical work.
"We work closely with Montreal International and Investissement Quebec. So a lot of talk about how we're seeing it and what the growth is going to look like in the future here in Montreal," said Karen Groom.
"So far it's looking very positive."