Workforce additions to feed into stronger purchasing power

Workforce additions to feed into stronger purchasing power

Workforce additions to feed into stronger purchasing power

Canada can expect greater consumer purchasing power in the near future, with the addition of almost 54,000 jobs last month and the shrinkage of the national unemployment rate to a near-record low of 5.5%.

This acceleration far outstripped earlier expert predictions of just 7,500 new jobs and a flat unemployment rate in September.

Year-to-date, Canada saw 358,100 new employees, representing the largest January-September volume since 2002.

This accompanied a 4.3% annual increase in hourly wages, outstripping the 3.7% growth observed in August. Total hours worked also went up by 1.3% year-over-year in September, slightly up from the 1.2% in August.

CIBC World Markets Inc. chief economist Avery Shenfeld argued that these trends point towards the Canadian economy’s substantial robustness against fluctuations in global trade currents.

“Canada’s labour market seems to have been vaccinated against the global economic flu going around,” Shenfeld wrote in an investor note last week, as quoted by Bloomberg.

In its mid-September report, the Canadian Real Estate Association adjusted its home sales projections upward due to the influence of lower rates for longer-term mortgages.

For 2019, overall Canadian home sales will likely recover to 482,000 units, growing by 5% from the five-year low registered last year. This was 19,000 transactions greater than CREA’s previous forecast, although it’s still considerably below the annual record of nearly 540,000 set in 2016.

For 2020, the CREA predicted 7.5% growth, up to 518,100 units sold. While a bit lower than expected, much of this will be due to “a weak start to 2019 rather than a significant change in sales trends out to the end of next year.”