Regular EI beneficiaries keep falling in Alberta

Nationally, 442,600 people received regular EI benefits in June, down 180 from the previous month and by 21,280 from last year

Mario ToneguzziThe number of Employment Insurance beneficiaries in Alberta declined in June for the fourth consecutive month, down 2.8 per cent to 47,700, according to data released on Thursday by Statistics Canada.

“There were decreases in the CMAs (census metropolitan areas) of Edmonton (-5.0 per cent) and Calgary (-1.7 per cent), as well as in the census agglomerations (CAs) (-3.3 per cent), most notably Wood Buffalo. Compared with June 2018, the number of EI recipients in Alberta was down 10.9 per cent. Over the same 12-month period, the unemployment rate in the province was unchanged at 6.6 per cent and total employment rose 1.3 per cent, according to the LFS (Labour Force Survey),” said the federal agency.

On a monthly basis, recipients were down 1,350 in the province and by 5,850 from a year ago.

Nationally, in June, 442,600 people received regular EI benefits, down 180 from the previous month and by 21,280 from last year.

“This decrease was due almost entirely to declines observed in the fall of 2018. Year-over-year decreases occurred in all provinces, with the exception of New Brunswick and Manitoba, where the number was little change,” it said.

“In general, variations in the number of beneficiaries can reflect changes in the circumstances of different groups, including those becoming beneficiaries, those going back to work, those exhausting their regular benefits, and those no longer receiving benefits for other reasons.”

At the national level, StatsCan said the number of EI claims decreased 1.4 per cent to 227,300 in June. The number of claims provides an indication of the number of people who could become beneficiaries, it said.

“An increase in claims in New Brunswick (+6.5 per cent) was more than offset by decreases in Prince Edward Island (-6.0 per cent), Newfoundland and Labrador (-5.0 per cent), Ontario (-3.1 per cent), Saskatchewan (-2.0 per cent) and Quebec (-1.2 per cent). There was little change in the other provinces. Compared with June 2018, the number of claims at the national level fell 4.1 per cent. Decreases occurred in all provinces with the exception of British Columbia, where claims increased 3.5 per cent on a year-over-year basis.”

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