Full-Time Jobs Surge in February

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Statistics Canada reports 56,000 new jobs were created last month, with a majority in full-time work. The back-to-back results gave Canada its strongest two-month stretch of job creation since the spring of 2012 - and its best two-month start to a year since 1981.

"The sudden surge in jobs in Canada comes as a bit of a head scratcher for economists because other recent economic data, including gross domestic product and inflation, have been suggesting the economy is softening".

The Atlantic provinces appear to be doing the worst regarding employment, with Newfoundland and Labrador facing an 11.8% unemployment rate, PEI at 10.3%, New Brunswick at 8.5%, and Nova Scotia at 6.4%. In a speech on Thursday, central bank deputy governor Lynn Patterson highlighted Canada's strong employment numbers as one bright spot in a mixed bag of economic data.

There was little change in the number of people who are self-employed, while employment dropped by 11,000 in transportation and warehousing, mostly in Ontario.

Overall, the employment increase was led by a gain of 46,200 positions in the services sector, largely concentrated in the categories of professional, scientific and technical services, public administration and wholesale and retail trade.

According to Statistics Canada, Canada's economy added almost 60,000 jobs this February, with the majority being in Ontario.

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The Bank of Canada keeps close watch of several wage indicators ahead of policy decisions on its key interest rate.

Year-over-year average hourly wage growth in February for permanent employees was 2.3 per cent, up from January's reading of 1.8 per cent.

What happened: B.C. adds 3,600 jobs in February; unemployment rate falls 0.2 percentage points to 4.5 per cent.

Is there any ceiling for job growth in B.C.? Youth aged 15 to 24 drove employment growth for the second consecutive month, accounting for more than half of total job gains.

Within the province, the highest unemployment rate in February was 16.5 per cent, in the region that includes Campbellton and Miramichi.