09 July 2010

NL posts 8k job loss in June

The Newfoundland and Labrador economy shed 8,100 jobs in June, erasing gains posted in May. That’s according to figures release on Friday by Statistics Canada.

Overall, the Canadian economy gained 93,000 jobs in June.

Compared to June 2009, the province has gained 4,400 jobs.

According to Statistics Canada, the labour force dropped to 256,500 in June compared to 263,100 in May.

- srbp -

22 comments:

Wm. Murphy said...

"Despite the employment decline in June, growth since July 2009 has been 2.9 per cent, a faster rate of growth than the national average of 2.4 per cent," StatsCan reported.

Just wanted to pass on this info...

Ed Hollett said...

Of course if you'd read the post you'd have seen by reference to the year over year gain.

But then again, if you didn't post something, all the hours spent monitoring me would have been wasted.

Peter said...

But you failed to mention the year over year comparison to average Canadian growth, as Murph did. You only compared last month's loss. Another example of your selective choice of facts.

Ed Hollett said...

Peter, neither you nor Murph are in any position to lecture anyone about the use of facts, selective or otherwise.

PoscStudent said...

While we obviously still have an unemployment problem when you consider what the numbers have been over the last 20 years or even before that the province is doing pretty good.

We're still coming out of a worldwide recession and some provinces are facing their highest unemployment rates in recent history and we are seeing an unemployment rate lower then what it was when the economy was going strong.

Wm. Murphy said...

Eddie...Arte you okay; or is there something wrong?

I never lectured you about anything?
............. cue, Twilight Zone music

Wm. Murphy said...

By the way Ed...I was just passing on some additional info for the benefit of those that could not get the info through the a "reference".

I could be wrong but I think there maybe a few readers who missed the "reference"

Just saying!

Mark said...

I think you're all seeing in statistics what you want to see. The employment or unemployment "rate" in this province has become an utterly meaningless comparator to days gone by, due to the province's shrinking labour force. As more and more baby boomers remove themselves from the ranks of those working or seeking work, then using the unemployment rate as a yardstick for progress has to be taken with a grain of salt. I'm more concerned with the total number of jobs in the province, and the total number of people willing to work in or look for those jobs than the "rate" of employable people currently working. But hey, as Peter says, we all get to be selective.

The same can be said for "growth" which is simply a percentage measure of GDP (month over month, or year over year). In any resource based economy, which is what Canada still is in large part, and what Newfoundland is even more so, GDP is very heavily influenced by factors far beyond local or government control or influence - i.e. commodity prices. What drives "growth" in our province, presently? The GDP from Oil and govt spending, and the inflationary housing market. One of those factors is beyond our control, the other two are largely artificial.

An even worse economic statistic y which isn't mentioned above is "productivity" which essentially divides GDP by the labour force. A ten percent rise in oil prices results in Newfoundland's workforce becoming 4% more productive overnight, while a similar drop make us suddenly that much less "productive". It's hardly a useful indicator of anything.

Worst of all is the measurement of "economic activity". Take a room full of 50 people and have them all pass a twenty dollar bill around a circle and they can rightly claim to have generated $1000 in "economic activity". Yet it is amazing how many business leaders and government spokespeople get o report these wonderful statistics, uncontested, in the pages of our newspapers and over the airwaves.

So there's my rant on stats. An essential reading tool for newspaper articles that rely too heavily (and selectively) on 'em.

Ed Hollett said...

Absolutely right, Mark on several fronts.

This particular post is just a passing reference, a notation of specific report. I've done it a lot over the years. I can then go back later and draw out a larger point with a wider piece of commentary.

What is sometimes revealing, though is what some people elect to comment on and how they elect to comment, as in this case. Thanks Peter and Murph for your predictable interventions.

Stats - whether they are polling numbers or these sorts of stats - can't be taken in isolation.

Peter said...

Thanks, Mark, for pointing out the need to take all stats with a grain of salt. I wasn't singling out the "good" stats as such. Merely pointing out Ed's selective usage. If anything is predictable, it's exactly that: the Bondpapers agenda. Throw up. The damning stats right away and then take a day or two to spin everything else. Karl Rove would approve.
It's not the government criticism that irks me. I think it's crucial to scrutinize any administration. It's the sickening attempt to veil pure attack politics as reasoned observation.
Mark, I suggest you use the forums newspapers provide to raise the points you do. It's one of the first places readers go. Better than being an armchair critic. (Unless you have some conflict.)

Mark said...

The armchair is far more comfortable, there are no print deadlines, and the pay for my contribution is roughly the same. Although, at least the newspaper would fix my typos for me...

:)

But to the Karl Rove comparison, tell me why it is that you find this blog warrants such a comparison, but an army of apparatchiks on the public dime doing exactly the same thing with unlimited resources and a fawning press gallery doesn't?

pig said...

NL's job losses also aren't remarkable when one takes note of the fact that seven of ten provinces (including Alberta and BC) lost jobs last month and NL didn't have the highest percentage of job loss.

Mark said...

"pig" inadvertently raises another good point.

Why is it, in a province whose government and media are so obsessed with relative measures of economic "success", is it that Newfoundland's economic (and population) statistics are continually viewed in a vacuum?

Just as a magnet has more than one pole, demographics are influenced by push and pull factors. The loss of jobs in Ontario and Alberta (say nothing of long-held retirement plans of hundreds of ex-pat Newfoundlanders) are arguably the largest contributing factors to the small period of population growth experienced at the height of the latest recession.

Even more than the "pride" "strength" and "determination" which we are hebdomadally offered up as explanation for any Great Tidings that have been benevolently provided to us.

Ed Hollett said...

If you read the follow on post to this one, PIG, I think you'll get a sense that these figures are indicative of something - not sure what - but that the up and down of the past two months is likely a blip in the survey.

pig said...

Mark I'd say that you and Ed are two practised hands at portraying NL in a vacuum. There's no doubt that NL has a variety of problems but you two portray it as the extreme case in terms of corruption, democratic deficit, and economic backwardness. Ed in particular dismisses positive news or spins it as exceptional or not to the credit of people in the province while any ills experienced in the region are attributed directly to the present provincial administration.

Conveniently for Ed's partisan purposes NL loses jobs but he's absolutely blind to the fact that job loss last month was unexceptional.

Mark said...

I won't pretend or attempt to speak for Ed.

However, I take exception to your accusation.

The way in which one "criticizes the government" and the way in which one "portrays the province" are two wholly different things. I guess the next step is to have a state official get on the airwaves and call one of us a "traitor". That's way it works these days.

The diminishing ability of people to differentiate those two concepts is one of the reasons I'll continue to make comments about this government as I see fit.

But if you want a serious discussion about this government, compared to others, then perhaps you can start by naming another provincial government in this country that is less democratic than this one. Or one whose economic policies are less "backward", to use your own term of reference.

Ed Hollett said...

The challenges have stood for five years and they remain unanswered.

1. Peter and any of his sock friends can, at any time they wish, engage in a substantive factual rebuttal of any argument I make.

The fact that five years later they can only make things up (Hi Murph and Peter) or engage in personal attacks (Hi Peter, for one) demonstrates their own impotence.

2. Anytime any one of the brave socks wants to come out from behind the fake identities (Hi piggie, for one) and stand behind their comments, they are more than welcome.

Any time any one of them wants to step up and provide some substance to anything, they are more than welcome to do so.

I could bet my house on and I'd have no fear of losing a thing.

WJM said...

Worst of all is the measurement of "economic activity". Take a room full of 50 people and have them all pass a twenty dollar bill around a circle and they can rightly claim to have generated $1000 in "economic activity". Yet it is amazing how many business leaders and government spokespeople get o report these wonderful statistics, uncontested, in the pages of our newspapers and over the airwaves.

If, like the government, you got a cut every time the twenty passed from hand to hand, you'd be keen on "economic activity" as a meaningful measure, too.

WJM said...

Ed in particular dismisses positive news or spins it as exceptional or not to the credit of people in the province while any ills experienced in the region are attributed directly to the present provincial administration.

The present provincial administration doesn't credit positive news to the people in the province, either.

The present provincial administration credits positive news to itself.

Ed Hollett said...

Context is always important for understanding anything and for Peter, Murph, Pig and others, the context of many stories is what bothers them so.

The context, you see, counteracts the torque from their favourite sources.

Well, as far as the job numbers go, there is always a wider context. Just for Pig and the whole "relative" school, here's a wider analysis via the Globe:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/economy/canadian-job-machine-revs-into-high-gear/article1633942/

Peter said...

Ed:
I've tried to debate the substance of your posts many times, but you invariably reduce things to insult and name-calling. You pigeonhole people into categories that you construct out of thin air. Is it any wonder you've garnered the nickname "Ed Hominem"?

Ed Hollett said...

Peter, that counts as an excuse, not an argument.

My challenge goes unmet, yet again.

But just to give you even more opportunity let me ask this:

Did I selectively chose facts in discussing poll goosing and government's comms strategy?

Is that a fabrication of mine based purely on some partisan agenda a la Karl Rove?

Care to rebut that one?