Canadian Manufacturing

High-paying positions drove job growth in first half of 2012: CIBC

Canadian economy created 155,000 new jobs in the first six months of 2012, according to bank



Toronto—The Canadian economy saw solid job creation in the first half of 2012, with many of those jobs being in high-paying sectors, according to a new CIBC study.

But a slowing global economy likely means a drop in both the number and quality of new jobs in the coming quarters, according to CIBC’s latest Canadian Employment Quality Index.

“The good news is that the Canadian economy created 155,000 new jobs in the first six months of 2012,” CIBC deputy chief economist and index author Benjamin Tal said in a release. “The even better news is that these jobs were of high quality. These trajectories, however, are unlikely to last.”

The index, which combines information on the distribution of part-time versus full-time jobs; self-employment versus paid-employment; and the compensation ranking of full-time paid employment jobs, rose by 1.2 per cent during the first half of 2012 and is now back to its pre-recession level.

The report notes that full-time employment rose by 1.1 per cent during the first half of the year—ten times faster than growth in part-time employment, while accounting for 97 per cent of all jobs created during that period.

Another positive trend over the last six months, according to CIBC, was the growth of paid employees.

The number of these workers rose one per cent during the first six months of the year, compared to a growth rate of only 0.1 per cent among self-employed workers.

On average, the self-employed earn less than 80 per cent of the income of paid employees.

By province, the most significant improvement was seen in British Columbia, with close to 90 per cent of jobs created in the province in the past six months coming as full-time.

The sectoral composition of employment has also improved with strong gains in high-paying sectors such as utilities, manufacturing and finance.

Although Ontario lagged the nation in the pace of job creation in the first half of the year, the jobs that it managed to create were of relatively high quality.

Strong advances in the utility and financial sectors played a role but key was the four per cent increase in manufacturing employment led by high-paying subsectors such as computer and electronics, electric equipment and mineral manufacturing.

According to CIBC, job creation in Quebec outpaced all other provinces in the first half of the year, but the overall quality of employment fell modestly during that period, slightly eroding the positive impact on income growth in the province.

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