The Yukon’s labour force statistics showed consistently low unemployment rates for 2019, including December.
“(Employment is) holding pretty much the same, consistent,” Gary Brown, the senior information officer for the Yukon Bureau of Statistics, said Thursday.
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in December was 4.5 per cent, a full percentage lower than the rest of Canada.
There were 1,000 unemployed people in the Yukon last month, an increase of 100 compared to the previous month.
The annual unemployment rate for 2019 was 3.6 per cent.
“That’s the fourth year in a row we’ve been the lowest in Canada,” Brown said.
He noted the Yukon has seen the lowest unemployment rate in Canada for 38 of the last 39 months. The strong numbers are partially thanks to specific industry booms, Brown said.
“Construction, especially on the non-residential side, is strong, and Victoria mine is going,” Brown said.
Though the Yukon Bureau of Statistics does not traditionally forecast future numbers, Brown suggested low unemployment rates seem likely to remain consistent in the coming months.
“There’s nothing on the horizon that would suggest otherwise,” he said.
While the employment numbers are seasonally adjusted, Brown said the bureau hasn’t seen a dip in employment so substantial that the statistics needed to be drastically altered.
The current frigid temperatures are similarly unlikely to affect labour numbers, because 80 per cent of the Yukon’s workers are employed full time.
“We don’t see a lot of movement in the numbers due to weather factors like this, because it’s such a blip in the big picture,” Brown said.
“When you get a two-week period of cold, it doesn’t influence the numbers at all.”
The Yukon’s seasonally adjusted labour force in December totalled 22,200, with a decrease of 200 compared to November 2019.
The Yukon’s seasonally adjusted employment in December 2019 was 21,100.
The employment number dropped by 300, or 1.4 per cent, compared to December 2018.
The Yukon’s average year-to-date labour force for 2019 was 22,425. That number has risen incrementally each year, with a jump in 525 workers compared to 2018.
The Yukon’s year-to-date employment has similarly rose incrementally, with an increase of 308 workers compared to 2018.
The two years previous saw smaller increases of fewer than 100 workers.