Cape Breton unemployment rate up 0.3 per cent

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The agency provided data showing the province gained approximately 8,500 full-time positions but lost roughly 59,300 part-time ones, noting that the figures are rounded.

In January 2017, there were 21,000 people employed in the city, up from the current 20,600.

The drop nationally cools off Canada's strongest pace of growth since 2002 after creating more than 400,000 jobs in 2017.

The province hiked minimum wage by $2.40 per hour to $14 per hour at the beginning of the year, a move some economists warned could result in mass job losses as employers look to reduce costs.

Quebec's economy lost 17,300 jobs and the unemployment rate reversed the prior month's decline, moving back up to 5.4 per cent from a record-low of 5.0 per cent in December. "Overall, a mysterious mix of good and bad, with the latter's impact blunted by how strong job gains were in the lead-up to these figures", CIBC chief economist Avery Shenfeld wrote in a commentary. The survey also detected stronger wage growth in January of 3.3 per cent, which also led some to point out possible connections to Ontario. The current stock market rout, for instance, began last Friday after data showed wages there growing more than anticipated, raising worries that creeping signs of higher inflation might push the U.S. Federal Reserve to increase interest rates more quickly than expected.

Greater Victoria's labour force swelled to more than 200,000 in January, though that surge in numbers coincided with the region's unemployment rate rising slightly to 3.9 per cent, the second lowest in the country.

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There was little change in Ontario's jobless rate.

Canada's economy has still seen employment increase by 288,700 jobs over the past 12 months - 146,000 of which came in November and December.

Victoria's finance, insurance and real estate sector saw the biggest gain in employment over the past year with 7,500 new positions. The report also said Ontario shed 50,900 jobs last month - with all of the net losses in part-time work.

"It doesn't change the broader narrative around the Bank of Canada".

BMO chief economist Douglas Porter noted it was the first setback for jobs in Canada's job market in 16 months and Ontario was especially hard hit. "At the very least, we can dismiss any chance the bank hikes in March, and April is now looking more like a long shot as well", he said.