March Jobs Report Shows 196,000 Created, Unemployment Rate Remains At 3.8 Percent

America Created 196,000 Jobs in March, Beating Expectations for 170,000

Sectors posting notable job growth included health care and professional/technical services.

The report showed the unemployment rate fell to 7.9 per cent in March from 8.5 per cent in February.

Though some corners of the Victoria economy saw job growth - transportation and warehousing added 3,400 positions over the a year ago, and business, building and support services added 2,800 - they were offset by decreases.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' employment figures outpaced the Dow Jones' estimate of 175,000 jobs added during the month. The unemployment rate met expectations. The employment-population ratio was 60.6 percent in March and has been either 60.6 percent or 60.7 percent since October 2018.

New data released from Statistics Canada this morning showed a decrease of 7,200 jobs in March but a steady unemployment rate of 5.8%. Computer systems design added 12,000 jobs during the month. Jobs numbers com e from a survey of employers.

Why it matters: The province is running against national trends, which saw a slight decline in employment last month. In the 12 months prior to February, manufacturing had added an average of 22,000 jobs per month.

Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz expressed guarded optimism earlier this week that Canada would emerge from a soft patch, but said the economic outlook still warrants an interest rate below the neutral range.

Given the small change, the breakdown has less meaning than normal, but the drop was largely in full-time employment (-6.4k), and in the private sector (-17.3k).

The loonie has advanced 1.9 per cent since the start of the year even as it has lost ground since February, making it the second best performing currency in the G10 after sterling.

Within healthcare, ambulatory healthcare services assumed its usual position as the top hirer, adding 27,000 jobs in March, up 27% from February.

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