Canada’s economy posted a slight decline in employment in June, a month that still saw the jobless rate stay near its four-decade low and wages rise to their highest level in over a year.
The unemployment rate edged up to 5.5 per cent, compared with 5.4 per cent in May — which was its lowest mark since the government started collecting comparable data in 1976, Statistics Canada said Friday.
The labour force survey’s measures for wages, among the indicators closely followed by the Bank of Canada ahead of its interest-rate decisions, perked up last month.
Year-over-year average hourly wage growth for all employees was 3.8 per cent in June, giving the indicator its strongest month since May 2018 and second-best reading in a decade. It has been climbing in recent months — after hitting 2.8 per cent in May and 2.5 per cent in April.
Quebec saw wage growth reach five per cent for its highest level since April 2009.
CIBC chief economist Avery Shenfeld didn’t expect the jobs report Friday to change the Bank of Canada’s thinking ahead its interest-rate announcement next Wednesday. Like most analysts, he predicts the central bank to leave the rate unchanged.