Infographic 1
Highlights part 1

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Infographic description

The title of the infographic is "Highlights part 1"

This is a text box that presents the highlights of the release.

COVID-19 economic shutdown continues to significantly impact the labour market

In February 2020, the total number of Canadians with a job or business was 19.2 million. In April, employment declined by nearly 2 million, bringing cumulative employment losses since February to over 3 million.

The number of Canadians who are employed but absent from work is relatively stable from month to month under typical circumstances. The number of Canadians who were employed but worked less than half of their usual hours for reasons related to COVID-19 increased by 2.5 million between February and April. 4 in 10 of these workers feared that they might lose their job. More than one quarter lived in households that had difficulty meeting financial obligations.

From March 2019 to February 2020, the unemployment rate varied between 5.4% and 5.9%. In April, the unemployment rate increased by 5.2 percentage points to 13.0%, the second-highest on record. The unemployment rate in April would be 17.8% if those who had worked recently and wanted a job but did not search for work were included.

Impact spreads to the goods-producing sector

In previous labour market downturns, employment losses have been driven by goods-producing industries. In April, the impact of the COVID-19 economic shutdown spread to the construction and manufacturing industries, with losses totalling 581,000.

From March 2019 to February 2020, the total number of hours worked across all industries increased by an average of 0.1% each month. From February to April, total hours worked across all industries dropped by more than one quarter (-27.7%), led by declines in industries requiring physical contact with others and where working from home is not practical.

Source(s): Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey.

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