On Thursday, Statistics Canada released a report showcasing the latest data regarding job vacancies.
The report found that as of May, there were 1,005,700 open positions across Canada, the highest number on record.
According to the report, job vacancies increased 42.5 percent over May 2021. The job vacancy rate, which compares the number of vacant positions to all positions was up 4.4 percent over the same time period, sitting at 5.8 percent. These numbers are not seasonally adjusted.
Healthcare and social assistance were among the hardest sectors hit, with the number of vacancies rising to 14.5 percent.
The report highlighted the variance between provinces, finding that vacancies were highest in Nova Scotia and Manitoba, up 22.1 and 15.3 percent, respectively.
The ratio of unemployed people to open positions also varied dramatically. In British Columbia and Quebec, there was less than one unemployed person per job opening, whereas in Newfoundland and Labrador, the ratio was three to one.
The national average, however, was one to one, down from two to four in May 2021.
As the Financial Post reports, vacancy rates are an important sign of “excess demand” in the economy, since “the inability of companies to hire enough people to keep up with orders suggests the economy is unable to supply all the goods and services consumers and companies are seeking to buy.”
The Post suggested that the uneven distribution of positions to people can factor into rising inflation, adding that it played into the Bank of Canada’s decision to raise interest rates in July.
Senior economist at Indeed said the data shows “that Canadians who are looking for work are increasingly able to find it, but at the same time, filling job openings for employers is more challenging than it has been in the past.”
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