April 2023 employment numbers saw Brantford-Brant’s jobless rate reach its lowest level in six months.

The area’s unemployment rate dropped to 5% in April, down from March’s 5.3%, according to seasonally adjusted figures released by Statistics Canada. It’s the lowest jobless figure since last October.

The Brantford unemployment rate matches the national rate of 5% and is just off Ontario’s 4.9%. Employment increased by 33,000 in Ontario in April, the bulk of Canada’s total 41,000 job gains.

Several nearby communities within a 1-hour drive have a lower jobless rate than Brantford-Brant, but only one – Guelph – has a higher employment rate.

“When you compare last month’s numbers to April 2022, you see that the number of people in Brantford’s labour force has grown by about 5,000 people in 12 months,” said Danette Dalton, the Workforce Planning Board’s executive director.

“That’s impressive. Even more impressive is that almost all of those people found jobs.”

Women see more job gains

Women saw a greater share of Brantford-Brant’s employment growth over the last year, adding about 2,300 full-time and 1,000 part-time positions. Employment for men grew by about 600 full-time and 1,100 part-time positions.

Women in the core working ages of 25 to 54 saw the most employment gains, while most of the gains for men were in the 55 to 64 age group. Employment declined for men in the 25 to 54 age group year over year, according too unadjusted figures from Statistics Canada.

There were about 2,700 new postings in April on Grand Erie Jobs, the Workforce Planning Board’s online job board, down about 5% from March. Postings came from about 1,100 different employers.

Tigercat Industries, which has plants in Brantford and Paris, had the largest number of new job posts last month. The other Top-5 employers for postings were all from the public sector, including a school board, hospital and a municipal government.

There is evidence that demand for employees will continue in 2023. Seventy-seven per cent of the 250 Grand Erie businesses who completed the Workforce Planning Board’s EmployerOne survey in January said they anticipate hiring in 2023. That percentage increased to 91% for Brantford based employers.

Visit Statistics Canada’s website to read their news release on April 2023 employment numbers for Canada and Ontario.

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