TORONTO—The Canadian dollar dipped Friday amid disappointing jobs data that fell below what economists had been expecting.
The loonie was down 0.15 of a cent at 96.71 cents US before stock markets opened.
The shift lower came as Statistics Canada reported the economy shed 39,400 jobs last month, enough to push the unemployment rate up one-tenth of a point to 7.2 per cent. The total number of unemployed hit 1,380,300.
It was the second consecutive monthly loss of jobs and will come as a surprise to markets, which had expected something closer to the economists consensus of a modest 10,000 employment gain.
The agency says a whopping cut of 74,000 in the public sector, mostly in health care, social assistance and administration, was the main reason for the poor July labour market performance. While private employers actually added 31,400 jobs during the month.
Provincial unemployment breakdown (previous month in brackets):
- Newfoundland 11.4 (10.9)
- Prince Edward Island 11.8 (10.9)
- Nova Scotia 9.0 (9.0)
- New Brunswick 10.2 (11.2)
- Quebec 8.2 (7.9)
- Ontario 7.6 (7.5)
- Manitoba 5.5 (5.0)
- Saskatchewan 4.0 (3.7)
- Alberta 4.5 (5.0)
- British Columbia 6.7 (6.3)