More job losses in P.A.

City of Prince Albert. -- Herald file photo.

Three hundred fewer Prince Albertans were working in August, compared to the month before.

That’s according to the latest StatsCan labour force survey, which counted 19,300 employed people in Prince Albert. That put the city’s unemployment rate at 10.6 per cent, up 0.1 per cent from July.

The unemployment rate is actually down relative to this time last year, when it stood at 11.8 per cent. But that’s mostly due to fewer people searching for work. Only 56.6 per cent of the city’s residents had jobs last month, down from 59.4 in August 2016.

The province also shed jobs in August. With 1,500 fewer people employed than the month before, the unemployment rate went up 0.3 points to 6.9 per cent. That’s barely higher than where it stood one year ago.

Saskatchewan’s unemployment rate remains higher than the national average of 6.8 per cent, and is now worse than four other provinces. On a seasonally adjusted basis, Saskatchewan’s rate was actually down slightly to 6.6 per cent – still higher than the Canadian average of 6.2 per cent.

The job losses were driven by a drop in part-time employment. Only 200 full-time jobs were lost province-wide. Self-employed people and public-sector workers were particularly likely to become jobless.

The health and social service sector was the hardest hit in Saskatchewan, with 2,600 job losses over the month and 6,500 year-on-year.