July 14, 2009

Regina leads Canada in jobs

Below is an excerpt form a Leader Post article about job statistics in Regina and Saskatchewan. There is an increase in low-paid jobs and lay-offs are still happening.

"Statistics Canada data released Friday indicated there were 535,600 people employed in the province in June, which was up by 14,500 compared to June of last year.

Saskatchewan had the lowest unemployment rate in Canada at 4.6 per cent. The 3.4-per-cent unemployment rate in Regina was the lowest among major cities across the country. And Saskatoon, with an unemployment rate of 4.6 per cent, had the second lowest unemployment rate.

"This is a very exciting place and an exciting province,'' Premier Brad Wall commented Friday, at a press conference in the new Harbour Landing area in southwest Regina, where construction is underway on new houses and retail developments.

The news about the Saskatchewan jobs were in contrast to the national numbers, which once again showed that unemployment had increased.

"It looks like we've hit the bottom,'' said Doug Elliott, the publisher of the Sask Trends Monitor newsletter, adding that there may be reasons to hope the nation's economy might soon start improving.

But there might be reasons to worry about the sustainability of the job growth because many of the increases are in government jobs or in construction jobs that have been created as a result of heavy government expenditures in infrastructure, Elliott said.

"We're trying to get through this recession,'' Wall said. The underlying strength of the province's economy will sustain it well into the future once the recession is over, Wall added.

Regina Dewdney MLA Kevin Yates, who commented Friday on behalf of the NDP Opposition, said Wall is "only telling half the story,'' and the economic situation is not as bright as the premier suggested.

Layoffs have occurred in several industries in recent months and employment insurance claims have increased by 80 per cent, Yates said, in a telephone interview:" The government has done nothing to help people who have lost their jobs and are not sharing in the province's prosperity".

Source from Leader-Post.

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