Canada’s job market added 64,000 new workers in September, but most of them were part-time, according to Statistics Canada. This is twice as many new jobs as economists were expecting, but the job gains were concentrated in one sector. Education, which added 66,000 jobs in the month where schools are back in session.
The unemployment rate held steady at 5.5% in September, as more people joined the workforce. Canada’s adult population increased by just over 82,000 people during the month, of which almost 72,000 are considered to be in the labour force.
Economists say the surge in part-time work could be tied to the ongoing influx of immigrants, as “newcomers might not find full-time work right away.” They also say that the apparent hiring binge in education should be taken with a grain of salt, as it offset an unusual decline in August that was tied to the seasonal adjustment process.
Despite the weakness beneath the surface, economists say the past two months have clearly shown significant strength in hiring. However, they caution that more data is needed to determine whether this is a sustained trend or just a temporary uptick.