Statistics Canada to Release January Employment Figures and Show Omicron’s Impact

OTTAWA – Statistics Canada is due to report this morning on how the labor market fared in January amid tighter restrictions as the Omicron variant spread.

The Canadian economy added 55,000 jobs in December before COVID-19 cases began to climb at the end of the month, and pushed the unemployment rate down to 5.9%.

This was the lowest unemployment rate since February 2020 before the pandemic, when it was 5.7%.

January’s report is expected to wipe out December’s gains due to Omicron.

RBC economist Nathan Janzen and Claire Fan say they expected to see a drop of 75,000 jobs during the month and an unemployment rate of 6.4% after COVID-19 restrictions caused business closures across much of the country.

However, the duo say they expect Omicron’s impacts to be short-lived and not to last beyond the first quarter of 2022.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on February 4, 2022.

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