By Collin Gallant on September 9, 2017.
Medicine Hat News
Local unemployment in the region crept up slightly in August, but continues to fly well below last year’s levels.
The unemployment rate last month sat at 4.5 per cent for the Medicine Hat-Lethbridge economic region, making it the lowest of any region in Alberta.
The rate compares to 4.1 per cent in July and 7.3 per cent in August 2016.
Economists prefer comparing levels to those 12 months earlier to account for seasonal and student employment trends.
Across Alberta, the month-to-month rate rose in every region, but only worsened in the year-to-year comparison in Edmonton.
There, unemployment sat at 8.7 per cent in a three-month adjusted average. Calgary’s dropped to 8.5 per cent.
The provincial jobless rate is 8.1 per cent in the month, fourth highest in Canada.
The increase is explained by more people entering the workforce than found jobs.
Between August 2016 and August 2017, full-time employment in Alberta increased by 31,600 individuals, led by hiring in transportation, construction, and accommodation and food services.
Sectors seeing a decrease were health care, agriculture and trade.