Alberta ag sector jobs down 18.7% in four years: ATB

Number of private sector jobs in 2018 down by 2.2%; public sector jobs up by 19.3%

Research by ATB Financial’s Economics & Research Team indicates Alberta’s job recovery from the depths of the recession depends on which sector of the economy you look at.

When oil prices collapsed at the end of 2014, thousands of oil patch jobs were shed.

The total number of jobs has recovered but new part-time work overshadows full-time positions. And unemployment remains high.

In its daily economic update The Owl, ATB looks at where job growth has taken place and where declines are notable between 2014 and 2018.

“The sector that has seen the largest proportional decrease in its average annual number of jobs since 2014 is agriculture (not including food processing jobs which fall under manufacturing). The number of agriculture jobs in 2018 was down by 18.7 per cent or 11,300 positions,” it says.

“The forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas sector experienced the largest absolute loss of jobs, down 23,700 positions in 2018 compared to 2014 (-13.3 per cent). Other sectors yet to recover from the recession include manufacturing (-9.9 per cent) and construction (-4.4 per cent).”

ATB says the biggest gain in percentage terms was in the utilities sector, which saw positions increase by 28.4 per cent (5,200) between 2014 and 2018. The health care and social assistance sector added the most jobs at 37,200 (15.4 per cent), followed by educational services at 33,200 (26.7 per cent) and public administration at 21,500 (24.5 per cent).

“The average number of private sector jobs in 2018 was down by 2.2 per cent (6,100) compared to 2014 while public sector jobs were up by 19.3 per cent (73,200),” says ATB.

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