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Montreal Jun 5 (Canadian-Media): Employment in Quebec increased by 230,900 (+ 6.5%) in May 2020 compared to April 2020. The unemployment rate fell by 3.3 percentage points in May to settle at 13.7%. This is evident from the employment and labor force data from Statistics Canada's Labor Force Survey (LFS) results released June 5.
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Full-time employment increased by 229,600, while part-time employment remained stable (+ 1,300). Employment increased in the private sector (+ 200,100) and in the public sector (+ 35,800), while it decreased among the self-employed (- 5,000). The participation rate rose 1.5 points to 61.9%, and the employment rate rose 3.3 points to 53.4% in May.
In Canada, in May, employment increased by 289,600 (+ 1.8%). The unemployment rate increased by 0.7 points to 13.7%. As in Quebec, employment resumes in British Columbia (+ 43,300) and Alberta (+ 28,200). The Ontario fell by 64,500 jobs.
In the first five months of 2020, compared to the same period of the previous year, employment in Quebec fell by 274,600. During this period, full-time employment fell by 119,800 and that of part-time of 154,800. Since the start of 2020, the unemployment rate in Quebec has averaged 9.5% (Canada: 9.0%).
Caution Regarding the Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the EPA Data
As in March and April, the effects of the COVID-19 crisis on the labor market in May must be interpreted with caution when analyzing the results of the Labor Force Survey (LFS).
The survey reference period for the month of May is from May 10 to 16. The effects on employment and unemployment of certain measures taken by the Québec government during this period were therefore potentially measured by the survey, in particular the reopening of primary schools, daycare services and certain stores outside of the greater Montreal region as well as the gradual resumption of activities in the manufacturing and construction sectors from May 11. Since the reopening of stores in the greater Montreal region took place on May 25, that is after the reference week, its effects are not measured in this edition of the Labor Force Survey .
The correct categorization of a person's activity status according to the usual definitions of employment, unemployment 1 and inactivity may have been more difficult during this edition of the survey.
Finally, the earlier implementation of containment measures in certain provinces and their gradual withdrawal at a different rate from one province to another can affect interprovincial comparisons.
Thus, it will take a longer period of analysis to assess the trend effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Quebec job market. Note also that the monthly data are based on a sample and thus subject to a certain variability. The newsletter The Daily Statistics Canada provides detailed analyzes of pandemic impact on the labor market in May 2020.
In addition, the LFS estimates for the administrative regions, seasonally adjusted by the Institut de la statistique du Québec, are published as three-month moving averages to mitigate the irregular fluctuations due to the small sample sizes. For more information on the interpretation of these data, please consult the document Some reminders concerning three-month moving averages (MM3M) .