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November 2005
Vol. 6, no. 11

Perspectives on Labour and Income

Youth and the labour market
Jeannine Usalcas

  • Youth (aged 15 to 24) made significant strides in the labour market during the recent period of economic growth from 1997 to 2004, after major declines for most of the 1990s.
  • Employment growth was stronger for young women than for young men, resulting in a higher proportion of young women than young men working in 2004. The trend was particularly evident for those 15 to 19.
  • Major growth took place in industries more likely to hire young people, especially teenagers: retail trade, and accommodation and food services. More women than men tend to take jobs in these industries—as cashiers, salespersons, or food and beverage servers.
  • Some of the industries more likely to hire young men were not as strong during this period. Although teenage boys were able to find jobs in construction, their share of employment in manufacturing, natural resources, agriculture, and transportation and warehousing declined.

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Jeannine Usalcas is with the Labour Statistics Division. She can be reached at (613) 951-4720 or

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