Labour Market Bulletin - Manitoba: (Quarterly Edition)

The Quarterly Edition of the Labour Market Bulletin is a look back over the past three months, providing an analysis of quarterly Labour Force Survey results for the province of Manitoba, including the regions of Winnipeg, Northern Manitoba and Southern Manitoba.

Overview

Employment

Manitoba's employment and labour force declined in the fourth quarter after rallying over the summer. The province shed 3,000 jobs in October and has not yet rebounded, remaining 2,300 positions down over the quarter.

Year over year, Manitoba dropped over 2,000 jobs. The losses were entirely in full-time positions (down 5,700) while part-time positions increased (up 3,400) since this time last year.

Private sector employment remains virtually unchanged since fall , while public sector employment was down 5,800 jobs (-3.6%). At the same time, the number of self-employed Manitobans grew by 3,400 over the year, a 4.1% expansion.

The data table for this graph is located below
Show Data Table
Manitoba Quarterly Employment Growth
Manitoba Canada
4Q 0.7% 0.6%
1Q 0.3% 0.6%
2Q 0.9% 0.3%
3Q -0.2% 0.1%
4Q 0.4% 0.0%
1Q -0.7% -1.5%
2Q 0.1% -0.4%
3Q 0.4% 0.0%
4Q -0.4% 0.5%
1Q 0.9% 0.3%
2Q 1.1% 0.7%
3Q 0.4% 0.4%
4Q 0.1% 0.3%
1Q 0.3% 0.5%
2Q -0.3% 0.3%
3Q 0.1% 0.4%
4Q 0.4% 0.0%
1Q 0.2% 0.2%
2Q 0.4% 0.7%
3Q 0.1% 0.1%
4Q 0.5% 0.6%
1Q 0.8% 0.2%
2Q -1.0% 0.3%
3Q 0.2% 0.2%
4Q -0.4% 0.2%

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey

Unemployment

Manitoba's unemployment rate (5.5%) was among the lowest nationwide in the fourth quarter, behind only Alberta (4.6%) and Saskatchewan (3.9%) but well below the national average (7.0%). Year over year, the unemployment rate remained stable, even as the number of unemployed increased. Fewer people looking for work in fall 2013 helped keep the rate low, as the labour market was better able to accommodate active job seekers.

By age group, those between 15 and 24 years saw lower unemployment rates this quarter, falling 1.6 percentage points to 10%. Women in that age group saw the most significant decrease, dropping 2.6 percentage points to 8.9%. The unemployment rate among those 55 and older declined this quarter after a sharp increase over summer. The group's rate now sits at 4.5%, almost a full percentage point over last fall's 3.6%.

Manitoba Quarterly Labour Force Statistics
Seasonally Adjusted Quarterly Data Q4
Q3
Q4
Quarterly
Variation
Yearly
Variation
Number % Number %
Population 15 + ('000) 978.0 974.9 966.3 3.1 0.3% 11.7 1.2%
Labour Force ('000) 668.1 669.6 668.9 -1.5 -0.2% -0.8 -0.1%
Employment ('000) 631.1 633.4 633.4 -2.3 -0.4% -2.3 -0.4%
Full-Time ('000) 507.9 510.0 513.6 -2.1 -0.4% -5.7 -1.1%
Part-Time ('000) 123.2 123.3 119.7 -0.1 -0.1% 3.5 2.9%
Unemployment ('000) 37.1 36.3 35.6 0.8 2.2% 1.5 4.1%
Unemployment Rate (%) 5.5% 5.4% 5.3% 0.1 0.2
Participation Rate (%) 68.3% 68.7% 69.2% -0.4 -0.9
Employment Rate (%) 64.5% 65.0% 65.5% -0.5 -1.0

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey – CANSIM Table 282-0087

The data table for this graph is located below
Show Data Table
Manitoba Quarterly Employment and Unemployment Rate
Unemployment Rate (%) Employment ('000)
4Q 4.4% 602.5
1Q 4.2% 604.5
2Q 4.0% 609.8
3Q 4.1% 608.6
4Q 4.3% 611.2
1Q 5.0% 607.1
2Q 5.0% 607.9
3Q 5.4% 610.3
4Q 5.7% 607.9
1Q 5.4% 613.3
2Q 5.5% 619.9
3Q 5.5% 622.6
4Q 5.1% 623.3
1Q 5.3% 625.0
2Q 5.4% 623.0
3Q 5.5% 623.6
4Q 5.4% 626.1
1Q 5.4% 627.3
2Q 5.2% 629.5
3Q 5.4% 629.9
4Q 5.3% 633.4
1Q 5.0% 638.5
2Q 5.5% 632.1
3Q 5.4% 633.4
4Q 5.5% 631.1
Manitoba Quarterly Unemployment Rates, by Gender and Age
Seasonally Adjusted Data Q4

(%)
Q3

(%)
Q4

(%)
Quarterly
Variation
(% points)
Yearly
Variation
(% points)
Total 5.5% 5.4% 5.3% 0.1 0.2
25 years and over 4.6% 4.2% 4.2% 0.4 0.4
Men - 25 years and over 4.5% 4.0% 4.1% 0.5 0.4
Women - 25 years and over 4.8% 4.4% 4.4% 0.4 0.4
15 to 24 years 10.0% 11.6% 10.6% -1.6 -0.6
Men - 15 to 24 years 11.0% 11.7% 12.5% -0.7 -1.5
Women - 15 to 24 years 8.9% 11.6% 8.6% -2.7 0.3

Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey – CANSIM Table 282-0087

Employment by Industry

After adding 2,400 jobs over summer, the service-producing sector stalled this fall, increasing by only 300 jobs. Year over year, employment remains virtually unchanged. Losses in other industries this quarter were offset by growth in business, building and other support services, finance, insurance, real estate and leasing, and health care and social assistance. Employment in accommodation and food services fell 4.7%, returning to last fall's levels. The trade industry added 3,500 jobs in December, but the increase was insufficient to push employment past numbers reported in fall .

The goods-producing sector lost 2,600 jobs this quarter, and overall employment in the sector is down 2,200 jobs year over year. Although its growth was negligible, manufacturing enjoyed its third straight quarter of job gains this fall, adding 100 positions. Year over year, the industry expanded by nearly 5%, generating 2,900 jobs since fall . The industry's slow but steady recovery from the recession is expected to continue in and pick up pace over the next two years. US demand for transportation equipment is expected to strengthen, as evidenced by New Flyer Industries' increased third quarter bus ordersFootnote 1.

Construction industry employment fell for the third consecutive quarter, losing 1,200 jobs this fall. These losses are not unexpected as the industry returns to more typical numbers following all-time high construction employment (51,500) in the first quarter of . Year over year, employment in the industry is down nearly 11% since last fall (5,100 jobs). Going forward, a number of major construction projects across the province will likely reverse the trend, keeping the industry busy in .

Employment in agriculture has been steadily declining over the last few decades; however, early saw the industry rally. Since then, the industry's workforce has slowly decreased and has now returned to last fall's levels. Corn and soy crop yields surpassed last year's record output by 27% and 4.2% respectively. However, farmers may see lower prices than last year as favourable growing conditions across the continent have flooded the market.

Manitoba Quarterly Labour Force Statistics, by Industry
Seasonally Adjusted Data ('000) Q4
Q3
Q4
Quarterly
Variation
Yearly
Variation
Number % Number %
Total employed, all industries 631.1 633.4 633.3 -2.3 -0.4% -2.2 -0.4%
Goods-producing sector 144.7 147.4 146.9 -2.7 -1.8% -2.2 -1.5%
Agriculture 23.0 24.2 22.8 -1.2 -4.8% 0.2 0.9%
Forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas 6.8 7.6 7.4 -0.8 -10.1% -0.6 -8.1%
Utilities 8.4 8.0 8.1 0.4 5.0% 0.3 3.7%
Construction 41.4 42.6 46.4 -1.2 -2.9% -5.0 -10.9%
Manufacturing 65.1 65.0 62.2 0.1 0.2% 2.9 4.7%
Services-producing sector 486.3 486.0 486.4 0.3 0.1% -0.1 0.0%
Trade 92.6 92.9 93.0 -0.3 -0.3% -0.4 -0.4%
Transportation and warehousing 39.4 38.8 36.5 0.6 1.5% 2.9 7.9%
Finance, insurance, real estate and leasing 33.9 32.7 35.0 1.2 3.6% -1.1 -3.1%
Professional, scientific and technical services 28.2 28.3 29.2 -0.1 -0.1% -1.0 -3.4%
Business, building and other support services 20.6 19.3 20.3 1.3 6.9% 0.3 1.6%
Educational services 48.9 48.4 48.5 0.5 1.0% 0.4 0.9%
Health care and social assistance 95.9 94.9 93.5 1.0 1.0% 2.4 2.5%
Information, culture and recreation 23.7 24.1 25.9 -0.4 -1.9% -2.2 -8.7%
Accommodation and food services 39.6 41.6 39.8 -2.0 -4.7% -0.2 -0.5%
Other services 27.9 29.0 28.5 -1.1 -4.0% -0.6 -2.3%
Public administration 35.7 35.8 36.2 -0.1 -0.4% -0.5 -1.5%

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding.
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey – CANSIM Table 282-0088

Regional Analysis

Fourth quarter employment shrank in Winnipeg, leaving the city down 1,500 jobs over the previous year. Although the city's unemployment rate (5.5%) is higher than it was last fall, it has dropped considerably since summer , when it jumped to 7.0%. Construction should drive job creation in , with a number of major ongoing and upcoming projects. The development of three high-rise towers proposed for the downtown area, a major expansion of the RBC Convention Centre, and the redevelopment of the former Winnipeg Stadium site into retail space should keep the industry busy throughout .

Outside of Winnipeg, Manitoba's North Central region saw the most significant rise in employment, with 1,400 jobs added since last year, mainly in transportation and warehousing (data not shown in tables). South Central and Southeast also saw improvements in employment numbers and unemployment rates. Meanwhile, employment in the Southwest region dropped compared to last year. The decrease was largely due to a drop in construction and agriculture jobs (data not shown in tables).

Employment in Northern Manitoba decreased slightly since last year, while unemployment went down by 1.3 percentage points, to 6.5%. The Conference Board of Canada forecasts that metal mining will rebound as production increases at the Lalor, Rice Lake, and Farley Lake mines, which should lead to employment gains in the mining industry.

Manitoba Quarterly Labour Force Statistics, by Economic Region
Seasonally Unadjusted Data Employment Unemployment Rate
Q4

('000)
Q4

('000)
Yearly
Variation
(%)
Q4

(%)
Q4

(%)
Yearly
Variation
(% points)
Manitoba 628.9 632.7 -0.6% 5.2% 4.8% 0.4
Economic Regions
Southeast 56.8 56.0 1.4% 5.2% 4.8% 0.4
South Central 31.4 30.9 1.6% 3.7% 2.5% 1.2
Southwest 56.5 59.0 -4.2% 3.9 % 2.6% 1.3
North Central 24.4 23.0 6.1% 4.3% 3.4% 0.9
Winnipeg 378.4 379.9 -0.4% 5.5% 5.2% 0.3
Interlake 46.9 48.4 -3.1% 5.1% 3.6% 1.5
Parklands & North 34.6 35.5 -2.5% 6.5% 7.8% -1.3

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding.
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey – CANSIM Table 282-0054

The data table for this graph is located below
Show Data Table
Manitoba Quarterly Employment Growth, by Economic Region
Economic Region % Change in Employment
North Central 6.1%
South Central 1.6%
Southeast 1.4%
Winnipeg -0.4%
Parklands & North -2.5%
Interlake -3.1%
Southwest -4.2%

Feature Article: Manitoba's Transportation Sector: Employment and Hub Development

As a transportation hub, Manitoba stands out among Canadian provinces. It is centrally positioned in North America and its most populous city, Winnipeg, is well-placed along the Mid-Continent Trade and Transportation Corridor. The Winnipeg airport schedules the third most cargo flights in Canada. Given Manitoba's location, the transportation and warehousing sector has long been an important building block of provincial economy. In , transportation and warehousing brought in $3.2 Billion (chained dollars) and accounted for 6.3% of the province's total GDP. Considering the sector accounts for only 4.2% of Canada's GDP, it is of chief importance to Manitoba's economic health and labour force.

Transportation Sector Employment

The transportation and warehousing sector accounted 5.8% of all employment in Manitoba in . Nearly half of these jobs are in the trucking industry. In fact, truck transportation, while prone to large yearly fluctuations, has expanded employment an average of 0.8% annually over the last decade. Yet, as jobs numbers grow, the number of successful trucking businesses is shrinking. In , Manitoba was home to more than 1,000 for hire trucking companies that operated interprovincially or internationally. That number dropped to 940 in , due in part to increasing operating expenses. Between and , vehicle fuel expenses rose 21.6%, while salaries rose 16.3% and other operating expenses increased 17.2%. Nevertheless, companies that have streamlined operations have seen their revenues outpace their operating expenses as companies.

Warehousing and storage has also grown, expanding an average of 6.2% annually since . The industry has nearly doubled employment over the last decade and now sits at 2,000 jobs. Employment in postal service has also increased; since , the industry has averaged 2.7% annual growth. However, growth in this industry is expected to slow over the next few years, as Canada Post moves out of home delivery across Canada and streamlines operations. Canada Post has announced that it will resolve staffing adjustments through attrition and hiring freezes.

The data table for this graph is located below
Show Data Table
Transportation & Warehousing Employment Echoes Manitoba's Economic Activity
Total imports & exports (yearly change) Transportation and Warehousing employment (# in thousands)
6.2% 32.8
7.2% 34.8
12.1% 34.2
11.5% 36.4
16.7% 38.4
2.0% 36.4
16.1% 33.2
9.4% 37.3

Source: Statistics Canada: LFS Employment;
CANSIM 228-0060 Merchandise imports and domestic exports

Over the last decade, employment in transportation and warehousing has grown by a compound annual rate of 0.3%, compared to Manitoba's average total employment growth of 1.0%. Employment in the sector is closely tied to Manitoba's economy and shadows fluctuations in the amount of goods shipped. After shedding over 10% of its workforce in the two years following the recession, employment in the sector is climbing back to peak levels as Canada finishes its economic recovery. Going forward, a number of key developments in Manitoba's two major transportation hubs should promote more growth within the sector.

Port of Churchill

The Port of Churchill is a sea port located on Hudson Bay, and it provides prairie provinces easy access to European markets. As a major shipper of prairie crops, the Port faced an uncertain future when the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) lost its monopoly over wheat and barley sales in . Over the last decade, the port has shipped on average 498,000 tonnes of grains and oilseeds a year, with the majority of shipments coming from CWB. In , exports dropped below average, with roughly 421,000 tonnes shipped through Churchill. However, exports have rebounded, with more than 600,000 tonnes of grain moving through the port in .

Omnitrax Canada, owner of the port and accompanying rail system, has stated the port must diversify from agricultural commodities. As such, Omnitrix announced that it will begin shipping crude oil through Churchill, pending upgrades and a successful trial run. Initially scheduled for , the trial has been delayed till . There is opposition to the project, however, and critics are calling for additional oversight amid concerns that derailments would spell disaster for the north. Transportation Safety Board of Canada reports that there were 63 accidents on the rail line that directly services Churchill between and . All but 10 were derailments.

Recently, the port has been supported by a $25 million five-year program from the Canadian government, which pays companies $9.20 per tonne to ship through the port. The positive outlook is good news for Churchill's labour force which is heavily dependent upon the port as a primary employer.

CentrePort

CentrePort is a massive 20,000-acre industrial neighbourhood with access to rail, air, and road. The inland port is located next to Winnipeg's James Richardson International Airport. It is Canada's first Free Trade Zone with programs to provide incentives such as duty deferral and sales tax relief for companies. CentrePort Canada provides companies with easy access to major national and international road, rail, and sea corridors and gateways (Churchill).

Recently, the $212 million CentrePort expressway opened after 3 years of construction. The road is the largest highway capital project in Manitoba's history and will help move truck traffic through the inland port. Currently there are more than 2,000 acres of land ready for new development and more than 530,000 square feet of industrial space available in existing warehouse facilities. The port's intent is to tie together the three main transportation industries in one location and cement Winnipeg's status as a major transportation hub.

Note: In preparing this document, the authors have taken care to provide clients with labour market information that is timely and accurate at the time of publication. Since labour market conditions are dynamic, some of the information presented here may have changed since this document was published. Users are encouraged to also refer to other sources for additional information on the local economy and labour market. Information contained in this document does not necessarily reflect official policies of Employment and Social Development Canada.

Prepared by: Labour Market Information (LMI) Division, Service Canada, Manitoba
For further information, please contact the LMI team at: lmi-imt@workingincanada.gc.ca
For information on the Labour Force Survey, please visit the Statistics Canada Web site at: www.statcan.gc.ca

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