Jobless rate up in Eastern Ontario, Cornwall

SD&G – 2015 didn’t get off to a glorious start when it came to jobs in Eastern Ontario or in Cornwall.

Employment numbers released Friday show the unemployment rate in the region from Brockville to Ottawa and east to the Quebec border jumped up sharply to 6.4 per cent from 5.5 per cent in December 2014.

The same held true for the City of Cornwall as the jobless rate stood at 10.2 per cent from 6.6 per cent in December.

This is also the first month that Statistics Canada has readjusted some data, including reducing the size of Cornwall’s population (to 42,000) and drastically cutting the size of the labour force (to 24,400 from 29,000-32,000).

The numbers suggest 2,700 people were not in the labour force anymore (chose not to actively look for work) while the number of unemployed was up by 600 positions month over month.

While the numbers do show a trend in local employment, industry watchers take little stock in the actual value given its rate of variance.

Across Canada the unemployment rate fell to 6.6 per cent in January from 6.7 per cent in December as the economy added 35,400 jobs – mostly part-time positions.

In Ontario, the jobless rate was down a tenth of a per cent to 6.9 in January (from 7.0 per cent in December).

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