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Canadian Labour Demand Update: Analysis of Job Postings for the Fourth Quarter of 2020

This report provides an update of labour demand trends from October to December 2020 with data sourced from the Vicinity Jobs Hiring Demand Analytics Suite.

Key Takeaways

1

While the number of Canadian workers who were affected by the COVID-19 economic shutdown declined from a high of five million in April 2020 to 1.1 million by December 2020, the trend in the final months of the year signalled a reversal of this mid-year recovery.

2

In December 2020, both the participation rate and employment numbers declined across Canada.

3

There were 517,780 jobs posted across Canada in the last three months of 2020, representing a 19% decline from the same period in 2019.

Executive Summary

The labour market impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic were felt throughout the entirety of 2020. While the number of Canadian workers who were affected by the COVID-19 economic shutdown declined from a high of five million in April 2020 to 1.1 million by December 2020, the trend in the final months of the year signalled a reversal of this mid-year recovery. In December 2020, both the participation rate and employment numbers declined across Canada.

The first report in this series — Labour Demand Trends During the COVID-19 Pandemic, published in December 2020 — showed that labour demand sharply declined in the spring of 2020 following the pandemic-induced economic shutdown. The number of job postings in April 2020 was 58% lower than the same period in 2019; however, labour demand started recovering over the summer and autumn, which caused this gap to shrink to only 7% by September 2020.

In this report, we provide an update of labour demand trends for the period of October to December 2020. As in our first report, the data has been sourced from the Vicinity Jobs Hiring Demand Analytics Suite, which collates data on online job postings across Canada. The first part of the report discusses labour demand in Canada, while briefly highlighting the changes relative to the same period in 2019. We identify the sectors that are leading in job postings, as well as the top occupations and in-demand skills. The second part presents detailed labour demand trends for Alberta and Ontario. We focus on these two provinces because their labour markets have been the most severely affected by the pandemic-induced economic slowdown in Canada.

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