Employment in Canada is up by a million … but that is hardly enough

one-in-a-million

“Employment is up by one million since the recession ended.”

A statement like this may indeed be a big talking point when Statistics Canada releases the results of its monthly Labour Force Survey on Friday.

While a million more people at work sounds like a lot, the Canadian population has also increased by roughly the same amount with the result that the fraction of Canadians working has been pretty well unchanged for the last five years, and has yet to return to rates before the recession.

A million is a big number, but it’s not enough to signal a complete recovery from the recession.

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Three questions to ask the Minister of Finance

“Jobs and Growth the Priorities as Minister Flaherty Hosts Pre-Budget Consultations”, screams the title of a press release from the Department of Finance issued about a month ago.

Jim Flaherty wants to hear from Canadians about how he can maintain the federal government’s “focus on jobs and economic growth while reducing the deficit.”

But this week is a particularly good time to first pose a few questions to him in the hope of clarifying some facts about jobs, unemployment, and the role of government policy.

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