: Ontario Employment Report

Second Quarter of 2018
(April, May, June)
Ontario Ministry of Finance

Table of Contents

Introduction

About the Ontario Employment Report

The Ontario Employment Report is released four times a year and provides an assessment of the current trends and developments in the Ontario labour market. The Ontario Employment Report is a companion report to the Ontario Economic Accounts, which provides an overall assessment of the current state of the Ontario economy. Most estimates in the Ontario Employment Report are based on Statistics Canada data. Its primary audience includes economists in both public and private sectors and credit rating agencies.

Methodological note

In the current issue, year-over-year change represents change between the averages in the second quarter of 2017 and the second quarter of 2018. Note that the Ontario Economic Accounts report primarily shows changes between the previous and the current quarter.

This report uses seasonally adjusted data in charts displaying data with a monthly frequency in the Overview section.

Unadjusted data is used in charts and tables showing the changes for the current quarter compared with the same quarter for the previous year. Unadjusted data is also used to calculate annual averages, year-to-date averages and 2018 second quarter averages.

Overview

Ontario’s Labour Market

Year-over-year, Ontario’s employment grew by 2.0% (+139,500), higher than the Canadian rate of 1.3%.

Ontario’s unemployment rate was 5.9% in June 2018, up 0.2 percentage points from last month and down 0.5 percentage points from June last year.

Year-over-year Overview

Between the second quarter of 2017 and 2018:

  • Employment growth was driven by increases in full-time employment (+2.9%) while part-time employment declined (−2.4%).
  • The private sector added the most jobs, but the public sector experienced the highest rate of growth in employment (+3.3%).
  • There were significant employment gains in both the services- (+2.0%) and goods- (+1.9%) producing sectors.
  • Four of the five Ontario regions posted solid employment gains with Southwestern Ontario experiencing the fastest employment growth (+3.7%).
  • Older workers and youth experienced above-average employment growth (+3.4% and +2.5%, respectively).
  • The average hourly wage increased by 4.4%, to $27.43.
In Focus: Long-Term Unemployment
  • The incidence of long-term unemployment has not yet reached the pre-recession level.

Quarterly Details

Type of Work

Year-over-year, full-time employment increased by 2.9% (+170,900), while part-time employment decreased by 2.4% (−31,400).

Private sector employment grew the most (+90,400), followed by public sector employment (+44,700) and self-employment (+4,500).

Meanwhile, public sector employment recorded the highest growth rate at 3.3%, followed by private sector employment at 1.9% and self-employment at 0.4%.

Paid employment increased in below-average wage industries by 3.1%, while employment in above-average wage industries increased by 1.4%.

Sector and Occupation

Year-over-year, there were significant employment gains in both the goods-producing sector (+1.9%) and services-producing sector (+2.0%).

Among goods-producing industries, construction added the most jobs (+3.2%). This was followed by utilities, which saw the largest growth rate of 22.2%.

Among services-producing industries, transportation and warehousing gained the most jobs, followed by accommodation and food services and information, culture and recreation. Health care and social assistance had the largest decline in employment (−4.2%).

Among broad occupational groups, business, finance and administration saw the largest increase in employment, though management had the strongest rate of growth at 12.2%.

Geographic Region

Year-over-year, employment increased in four of the five Ontario regions. The rate of employment growth was highest in Southwestern Ontario (+3.7%), followed by Eastern Ontario (+3.0%), the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)1 (+2.8%) and Northern Ontario (+2.0%). Employment declined in Central Ontario  (−1.1%).

Year-over-year, the unemployment rate declined in four of the five Ontario regions and remained steady in Central Ontario. In the second quarter of 2018, the GTA had the highest unemployment rate (6.4%) and Eastern Ontario had the lowest unemployment rate (4.8%).

Quarterly labour force participation rates varied considerably among the economic regions. In the second quarter, participation rates ranged from 60.7% in Northern Ontario to 66.8% in the GTA.

[1] This economic region closely matches the GTA, the main exception being that it excludes the city of Burlington.

Age and Gender

Compared to the same quarter last year, core-aged workers (25 to 54 years) gained the most jobs, followed by older workers (55 years and over), and youth (15 to 24 years). Both older workers and youth experienced above-average employment growth rates (+3.4% and +2.5%, respectively). Males and females had similar growth rates (+2.0% and +1.9%, respectively).

In the second quarter, females and males had similar unemployment rates of 5.8%. Males saw the most notable decline compared to a year ago (−0.7 percentage points). The unemployment rate of youth was 12.9%, the highest among the three age groups.

In the second quarter, core-aged workers had the highest participation rate at 85.8%, followed by youth at 62.9% and older workers at 38.0%. Compared to a year ago, the participation rate for youth increased by 0.7 percentage points. Females continued to record a lower participation rate (61.1%) than males (69.1%). The participation rate for females edged up by 0.1 percentage points, but declined for males by 0.5 percentage points.

Education Level and Immigrant Status

In the second quarter of 2018, persons lacking a high school diploma continued to hold the lowest employment rate among all groups (56.7%) and university graduates continued to record the highest employment rate (86.3%).

The unemployment rate declined, year-over-year, for all core-aged groups by educational attainment, except for university degree holders. These were accompanied by increases in participation rates for all groups by educational attainment, except for a slight decline for university degree holders.

In the second quarter of 2018, core-aged recent immigrants (landed 5 to 10 years earlier) and very recent immigrants (landed 5 years or less) continued to have the lowest employment rates compared to established immigrants and Canadian-born, but their employment outcomes have improved in recent years. For instance, in the second quarter of 2018, 68.2% of cored-aged very recent immigrants were employed, the highest share on record (since 2006).

Compared to a year ago, the unemployment rates of Canadian-born (3.7%), established immigrants (4.1%), recent immigrants (4.8%) and very recent immigrants (6.4%) all improved.

Wages

Over the last two decades, average hourly wages increased from $24.00 in 1997 (in constant 2017 dollars) to $26.43 in 2017, an average annual increase in real hourly wages of 0.5%. Average hourly wages of full-time employees were $28.28 in 2017, 9.8% higher than in 1997, while average hourly wages of part-time employees were $18.01 in 2017, 10.6% higher than in 1997.

In the second quarter of 2018, the average hourly wage of Ontario employees was $27.43, an increase of 4.4% from the second quarter of 2017.2 Consumer Price Index inflation over the same period was 2.2%.3 Hourly wages increased year-over-year for both full-time (+3.9%) and part-time employees (+5.6%), permanent (+4.6%) and temporary employees (+3.8%), as well as employees with union coverage (+3.6%) and those without union coverage (+5.0%).

Employees in three broad occupational groups experienced more than average wage growth: natural resources, agriculture and related occupations (+10.6%); sales and service (+8.2%); and occupations in education, law and social, community and government services (+5.0%).

[2] Year-over-year comparison (between second quarters of 2017 and 2018) is in nominal dollars.

[3] Measured as an increase in the all-items Consumer Price Index for Ontario between April and May of 2017 and April and May of 2018.

In Focus

Long-Term Unemployment

Long-term unemployment tends to weaken labour market attachment and future employability of individuals due to perceived lower value to employers and/or erosion of skills.

Incidence of Long-Term Unemployment Has Been Steadily Declining

The number of long-term unemployed (defined as those unemployed for at least 26 weeks) has been steadily declining since 2010 when it peaked at 162,000. In 2017, 92,300 Ontarians were unemployed for at least 26 weeks.

The incidence of long-term unemployment has also declined from 26.8% in 2010, to 21.2% in 2017 and 18.7% in the first six months of 2018. The current share of long-term unemployment remains elevated compared to the pre-recession level (15.2% in 2008).

Older Workers Have the Highest Share of Long-Term Unemployed

While youth continued to have elevated unemployment rates in 2017, only 8.1% were long-term unemployed, compared to 35.0% of older workers. The incidence of long-term unemployment declined for all three major age groups following the 2008-09 recession. Core-aged workers recorded the biggest decline in the incidence of long-term unemployment (from 31.6% in 2010 to 20.7% in the first six months of 2018).

Graphic Descriptions

Overview: Overview of Ontario’s Labour Force

The chart indicates the change in Ontario’s total and full-time employment in the second quarter of 2018, compared to the same quarter a year ago, as well as the unemployment rate in June 2018. In the second quarter of 2018, Ontario’s employment rose by 139,500 net new jobs, compared to the same quarter in the previous year. Full-time employment increased by 170,900 over the same period. The unemployment rate was 5.9% in June 2018.

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Overview: Ontario’s Labour Market, 2008-2018

The combination line and area chart shows Ontario’s unemployment rate (line chart) and employment (area chart) from January 2008 to June 2018. Ontario’s unemployment rate has trended downwards since the recession, reaching 5.9% in June 2018. Employment in Ontario has risen steadily since the recession, reaching about 7.2 million workers in June 2018, putting it well over the pre-recession level of roughly 6.6 million.

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Quarterly Details, Type of Work: Employment Change by Full-Time, Part-Time Status

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s employment by full-time and part-time status. Total employment increased by 2.0%, driven by a gain in full-time employment (+2.9%), while part-time employment decreased (−2.4%).

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Quarterly Details, Type of Work: Employment Change by Employment Sector

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s employment for the private sector, public sector and self-employment. Employment increased in all the three sectors. Private sector employment increased by 1.9%, while public sector employment increased by 3.3% and self-employment grew by 0.4%.

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Quarterly Details, Type of Work: Employment Change by Above-, Below-Average Wage Industries

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s employment for above- and below-average wage industries, compared to the paid employment in all industries. Employment in below-average wage industries (+3.1%) increased more than employment in above-average wage industries (+1.4%). Paid employment in all industries (excluding self-employment) rose by 2.2%. Above-average wage industries are defined as those with earnings above the average hourly earnings of all industries in 2017.

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Quarterly Details, Sector and Occupation: Employment Change by Industry, Goods-Producing Industries

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s employment by industry for goods-producing industries. Construction experienced the largest employment growth (+3.2%), followed by utilities (+22.2%) and agriculture (+6.1%). Two industries had employment declines: manufacturing (−0.5%) and forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas (−0.6%).The overall employment in goods-producing industries increased by 1.9%.

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Quarterly Details, Sector and Occupation: Employment Change by Industry, Services-Producing Industries

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s employment by industry for services-producing industries. Seven services-producing industries had an increase in employment. Transportation and warehousing experienced the biggest employment gain (+11.3%), followed by accommodation and food services (+7.1%) and information, culture and recreation (+9.8%). Four industries experienced employment declines. The biggest employment decline occurred in health care and social assistance (−4.2%), followed by public administration (−0.8%) and wholesale and retail trade (−0.2%). The overall employment in service-producing industries increased by 2.0%.

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Quarterly Details, Sector and Occupation: Employment Change By Occupational Group

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s employment by broad occupational group. Six occupational groups experienced employment gains. Business, finance and administration occupations had the biggest employment gain (+8.4%), followed by management (+12.2%) and trades, transport, equipment operators and related occupations (+3.3%). Employment in four occupational categories decreased. Health occupations experienced the biggest decline (−9.5%), followed by sales and service occupations (−1.6%) and occupations in art, culture, recreation and sport (−6.9%).

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Quarterly Details, Geographic Region: Employment Change by Ontario Region

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in employment in the five Ontario regions: Northern Ontario, Eastern Ontario, Southwestern Ontario, Central Ontario and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). The GTA gained the most jobs (+2.8%), followed by Southwestern Ontario (+3.7%) and Eastern Ontario (+3.0%). Employment declined in Central Ontario (−1.1%). The overall employment increased by 2.0%.

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Quarterly Details, Geographic Region: Unemployment Rates by Ontario Region

The horizontal bar chart shows unemployment rates by Ontario region, in the second quarter of 2018. The Greater Toronto Area had the highest unemployment rate at 6.4%, followed by Northern Ontario (5.9%), Central Ontario (5.5%), Southwestern Ontario (5.0%) and Eastern Ontario (4.8%). The overall unemployment rate for Ontario was 5.8%.

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Quarterly Details, Geographic Region: Participation Rates by Ontario Region

The horizontal bar chart shows participation rates by Ontario region, in the second quarter of 2018. The Greater Toronto Area had the highest participation rate at 66.8%, followed by Central Ontario (64.4%), Eastern Ontario (63.8%), Southwestern Ontario (62.4%) and Northern Ontario (60.7%). The overall participation rate for Ontario was 65.0%.

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Quarterly Details, Geographic Region: Ontario Regions

The map shows Ontario’s five regions: Northern Ontario, Eastern Ontario, Southwestern Ontario, Central Ontario and the Greater Toronto Area. This map is based on groupings of Statistics Canada’s economic regions.

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Quarterly Details, Age and Gender: Employment Change by Age Group and Gender

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s employment for the three major age groups, as well as by gender, compared to the overall population. Ontarians aged 25 to 54 years gained the most jobs (+1.4%), followed by Ontarians aged 55 years and over (+3.4%), and Ontarians aged 15 to 24 years (+2.5%). Total employment (for population aged 15 and over) increased by 2.0%. Males (+2.0%) gained more jobs than females (+1.9%).

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Quarterly Details, Age and Gender: Unemployment Rates by Age Group and Gender

The horizontal bar chart shows unemployment rates for the three major age groups, as well as by gender, compared to the overall rate, in the second quarter of 2018. Youth (15 to 24 years) had the highest unemployment rate at 12.9%, followed by the core-aged population (25 to 54 years) at 4.7% and older Ontarians (55 years and over) at 4.2%. The overall unemployment rate in the second quarter of 2018 was 5.8%. Males and females had the same unemployment rate (5.8%).

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Quarterly Details, Age and Gender: Participation Rates by Age Group and Gender

The horizontal bar chart shows labour force participation rates for the three major age groups, as well as by gender, compared to the overall rate, in the second quarter of 2018. The core-aged population (25 to 54 years old) had the highest labour force participation rate at 85.8%, followed by youth (15 to 24 years old) at 62.9%, and older Ontarians (55 years and over) at 38.0%. The overall participation rate was 65.0%. The male participation rate (69.1%) was higher than the female participation rate (61.1%).

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Quarterly Details, Education Level and Immigrant Status: Employment Rate by Education Level and Immigrant Status (Core-Aged Population)

The horizontal bar chart shows employment rates by education level and immigrant status for the core-aged population (25 to 54 years old), in the second quarter of 2018. By education level, those with a university degree had the highest employment rate (86.3%), followed by those with a postsecondary certificate/diploma (86.2%), those with a high school diploma (74.1%), and those with less than high school education (56.7%). By immigrant status, those born in Canada had the highest employment rate (84.2%), followed by established immigrants with more than 10 years since landing (81.5%), recent immigrants with more than 5 to 10 years since landing (76.6%), and very recent immigrants with 5 years or less since landing (68.2%).

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Quarterly Details, Education Level and Immigrant Status: Unemployment Rates by Education Level and Immigrant Status (Core-Aged Population)

The horizontal bar chart shows unemployment rates by education level and immigrant status for the core-aged population (25 to 54 years old), in the second quarter of 2018. By education level, those with less than high school education had the highest unemployment rate (6.3%), followed by high school graduates (6.0%), those with a university degree (4.2%) and those with a postsecondary certificate or diploma (3.3%). By immigrant status, very recent immigrants with 5 years or less since landing had the highest unemployment rate (6.4%), followed by recent immigrants with more than 5 to 10 years since landing (4.8%), established immigrants with more than 10 years since landing (4.1%), and those born in Canada (3.7%).

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Quarterly Details, Education Level and Immigrant Status: Participation Rates by Education Level and Immigrant Status (Core-Aged Population)

The horizontal bar chart shows labour force participation rates by education level and immigrant status for the core-aged population (25 to 54 years old), in the second quarter of 2018. By education level, university graduates had the highest participation rate (90.1%), followed by those with a postsecondary certificate or diploma (89.6%), high school graduates (78.8%), and those with less than high school education (60.5%). By immigrant status, those born in Canada had the highest participation rate (87.8%), followed by established immigrants with more than 10 years since landing (85.6%), recent immigrants with more than 5 to 10 years since landing (81.4%) and very recent immigrants with 5 years or less since landing (74.6%).

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Quarterly Details, Wages: Average Hourly Wages, Total, Full-Time and Part-Time Employees

The line chart shows average hourly wages for all employees, full-time and part-time employees expressed in real 2017 dollars from 1997 to 2017. Real average hourly wages of all employees increased from $24.00 in 1997 to $26.43 in 2017; those of full-time employees increased from $25.76 in 1997 to $28.28 in 2017 and those of part-time employees increased from $16.29 in 1997 to $18.01 in 2017.

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Quarterly Details, Wages: Hourly Wage Growth by Type of Work

The vertical bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) per cent change in Ontario’s hourly wages by type of work. The average hourly wage increased by 4.4%. Hourly wages increased for both full-time (+3.9%) and part-time employees (+5.6%); permanent (+4.6%) and temporary employees (+3.8%) and employees with union coverage (+3.6%) and those without union coverage (+5.0%).  Inflation during the same period was 2.2%.

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Quarterly Details, Wages: Average Hourly Wage Rate and Wage Growth by Occupational Group

The horizontal bar chart shows a year-over-year (between the second quarters of 2017 and 2018) change in Ontario’s average hourly wage rate and growth by occupational group. The average hourly wage rate for Ontario was $27.43 (+4.4%). The highest average hourly wage rate was for management occupations at $45.86 (+3.0%); followed by natural and applied sciences and related occupations at $37.28 (+2.7%); and occupations in education, law and social, community and government services at $34.48 (+5.0%). The lowest average hourly wage rate was for sales and service occupations at $17.92 (+8.2%). The only occupational group with a decline in average hourly wages was occupations in art, culture, recreation and sport (−3.8%).

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In Focus: Unemployed by Duration of Unemployment

The vertical bar chart shows numbers of unemployed Ontarians by duration of unemployment (1 to 4 weeks, 5 to 13 weeks, 14 to 25 weeks, 26 weeks or more and unknown duration) from 2006 to the first six months of 2018. The number of unemployed peaked in 2009 and has gradually declined since then, with declines in all unemployment categories by duration of unemployment, especially for those unemployed for more than 4 weeks. The number of those unemployed for at least 26 weeks peaked in 2010 and has declined since then.

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In Focus: Long-Term Unemployment Share by Age Group

The line chart shows the long-term unemployment (26 weeks+) share by age group (15 years and over, 15 to 24 years, 25 to 54 years, 55 years and over) from 1976 to the first six months of 2018. The long-term unemployment share (15 years and over) peaked in the early 1980s, early 1990s and late 2000s. Ontarians aged 55 years and over had the highest share of long-term unemployed, followed by 25 to 54 year old Ontarians, and those aged 15 to 24.

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