It doesn’t take a scientist to note the vast amount of construction sites populating the Greater Victoria region. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a window in this city without at least one crane coming into view.

The numerous developments, coupled with thriving food and technology sectors and a plethora of government jobs, have all contributed to the B.C.’s capital’s shrinking unemployment rate.

Of the four metropolitan regions in British Columbia (Victoria, Vancouver, Abbotsford-Mission, and Kelowna), Victoria has the lowest unemployment rate by a considerable margin.

Metropolitan regions in British Columbia sorted by unemployment rate

  1. Victoria: 3.3%
  2. Vancouver: 4.2%
  3. Abbotsford-Mission: 4.9%
  4. Kelowna: 6.1%

Metropolitan regions in British Columbia sorted by 1-year employment growth percentage (November 2016 – November 2017)

  1. Kelowna: 10.7%
  2. Vancouver: 3.8%
  3. Victoria: 3.5%
  4. Abbotsford-Mission: -0.7%

Given that Victoria already has low unemployment, it’s certainly encouraging to still see the employment growth to continue trending in the right direction. Victoria saw 6600 jobs created from November 2016 to November 2017, an increase of 3.5%.

That trend has put Victoria right at the top of the unemployment rate rankings, Canada-wide.

Major metropolitan regions in Canada sorted by unemployment rate

  1. Victoria, BC: 3.3%
  2. Vancouver, BC: 4.2%
  3. Hamilton, Ont: 4.2%
  4. Regina, Sask: 4.8%
  5. Abbotsford-Mission, BC: 4.9%
  6. Winnipeg, Man: 5.7%
  7. Ottawa-Gatineau: 5.8%
  8. Toronto, Ont: 5.9%
  9. Kelowna, BC: 6.1%
  10. Montreal, Que: 6.6%
  11. Quebec, Que: 6.8%
  12. Calgary, Alta: 7.8%
  13. Edmonton, Alta: 7.8%
  14. St. John’s, Nfld: 8.5%

British Columbia lowest unemployment rate in Canada

Victoria is by no means an outlier in our province. In fact, BC has consistently had among the lowest unemployment rates in Canada. From November 2016 to November 2017, British Columbia saw over 92,000 jobs created, an increase of 3.8%.

Finance, agriculture, and construction saw the largest increase in job creation from 2016 to 2017, with 15.3%, 11.6%, and 7.6% growth respectively.

Provincial unemployment rates across the nation. (Government of British Columbia)

Canadian unemployment rate hits lowest since 2008

Canadian unemployment has dropped to 5.9%, its lowest since 2008 prior to the market crash. Nearly 80,000 jobs were created from October to November, dropping the unemployment rate by 0.4%.

The unemployment drop marks 12 straight months of positive job creation in Canada, its best 12-month job performance in a decade.

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