Unemployment in Greater Victoria rose in March according to new figures.
Victoria Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) recorded a seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate of 5.7 per cent in March 2021, an increase of 0.8 per cent compared to February.
The unemployment rate in Victoria CMA was lower than the respective CMAs of Vancouver (eight per cent) and Abbotsford-Mission (6.3 per cent), but higher than Kelowna (five per cent).
These new local figures stand in contrast to recent months, as the local unemployment rate has been declining steadily since its peak in the summer months of 2020.
The sectors of accommodation and food services, information, culture and recreation and construction all recorded declining numbers. This said, the region’s employment remains among the most robust in the country. Only Quebec City (4.9 per cent) and Kelowna (five per cent) recorded lower unemployment rates than Victoria, which was tied for third nationally with Sherbrooke.
Provincially, the unemployment rate stood unchanged at 6.9 per cent, while the national unemployment rate dropped by 0.7 to 7.5 per cent.
The national figure means unemployment in Canada is at its lowest level since February 2020.
“This reflected strong employment growth that exceeded the number of people entering the labour market,” reads a report from Statistics Canada.
The numbers reflect labour market conditions during the week of March 14 to 20, before B.C. implemented a three-week lockdown described as a ‘circuit breaker’ to help break rising COVID-19 infections. Ontario and Quebec have instituted comparable measures.
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