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Canada's Changing Labour Force, 2006 Census: The provinces and territories

Unemployment

Unemployment rates low across much of the West

Pockets of low unemployment continued to be found across Canada's West. Alberta boasted the lowest unemployment rate, at 4.3%, of all Canadian provinces and territories. In Calgary and Medicine Hat, unemployment rates were lower still at 4.0%.

Unemployment also fell across much of British Columbia, where the provincial rate dropped from 8.5% in 2001 to 6.0% in 2006. In Kamloops, the decline was even more dramatic, as the rate tumbled from 10.5% to 6.2%; in Kelowna, it dropped from 8.8% to 5.1%. Vancouver also saw a large drop in its unemployment rate from 7.2% to 5.6%. The unemployment rate in Victoria was a particularly low 4.3%.

While some cities in British Columbia were still lagging behind the national average, there was also notable improvement. In Prince George, the unemployment rate fell from 11.4% to 7.6% and in Nanaimo, from 11.6% to 7.0%.

Many Ontario cities had strong local labour markets in 2006, with unemployment rates below the national average. In Guelph, the unemployment rate was 5.1% in 2006, while in nearby Kitchener, it was 5.6%. The unemployment rate in the census metropolitan area of Ottawa Gatineau (5.7%) was also below the national average.

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