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Western Alberta unemployment rate continues to drop

The unemployment rate in Western Alberta has dropped nearly one per cent for the month of September. Statistics Canada data released on Friday shows the economic region containing Grande Prairie had an unemployment rate of 11.2 per cent, down from 12.1 per cent in August. In September 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic, the rate was 5.9 per cent.

The regional unemployment rate is currently the second-lowest in the province, coming in behind the Lethbridge-Medicine Hat, which sits at 8.6 per cent. The overall provincial unemployment rate is slowly crawling in the right direction, dropping 0.1 per cent in September to 11.7 per cent, the second-highest of the provinces.

Newfoundland and Labrador currently had the highest unemployment rate last month at 14.8 per cent. The national unemployment rate dropped more than one per cent, going from 10.2 per cent in August to 9.0 per cent in September.

A net of 378,000 net new jobs were added in Canada through September. Statistics Canada says the gain is far stronger than economists expected and brings employment to within 720,000 of its level in February 2019, before the novel coronavirus pandemic took hold in Canada.

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