Alberta’s private sector job vacancy rate has stabilized at 2.2 per cent as the province had 35,300 unfilled jobs in the third quarter of this year, according to a report released on Thursday by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.
In the latest Help Wanted report, Alberta had the second lowest job vacancy rate in the country just ahead of Prince Edward Island’s 1.9 per cent.
Alberta was also fourth in the country when it came to unfilled jobs behind Ontario (168,000), Quebec (119,800), and British Columbia (71,400).
Canada’s job vacancy rate maintained its historic high of 3.2 per cent with 433,000 private sector jobs sitting vacant for at least four months.
“This is now the fifth consecutive quarter in which we’re seeing a record high vacancy rate. The smallest of firms, those with fewer than five employees, are having the hardest time recruiting workers, with a vacancy rate as high at 5.4 per cent,” said Ted Mallett, CFIB’s chief economist, in a news release.
“Those unfilled positions add up overtime, bringing down firms’ productivity levels and ultimately their ability to be profitable and to grow.”
In Canada, according to the CFIB, the personal services industry, which represents businesses like hairdressers, dry cleaners and funeral services, maintained the highest vacancy rate at 4.9 per cent, with construction coming in second at 4.7 per cent.
Hospitality (4.0 per cent), agriculture (3.7 per cent) and information (2.4 per cent) all experienced significant growth in vacancy rates over the past year.
On the other hand, transportation (3.4 per cent), manufacturing (2.8 per cent), wholesale (2.6 per cent) and retail (2.5 per cent) have seen steady declines. The natural resources sector had the lowest vacancy rate at 1.8 per cent, it said.
Mario Toneguzzi is a business reporter in Calgary.
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