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Canadian Job Postings Through December 31: Closing the Gap

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Job postings trends converge as 2020 sees a milder December decline.

This post is updated as of January 4, reflecting data through December 31. We will be regularly updating this data as we track how COVID-19 impacts the global labour market. 

  • As of December 31, total job postings on Indeed Canada stood just 1% below last year’s trend. 
  • The total posting gap narrowed four percentage points from early December, as job postings trended down more slowly than their typical year-end slide. 
  • The current stability relative to typical seasonal trends suggests that many employers are looking through the recent upswing in new COVID-19 cases to what’s hopefully a brighter outlook in 2021. 

Hiring appetite quite strong in some sectors

  • Job postings in several sectors are running well above their trends at the same point at the end of 2019. Some, like nursing, as well as loading and stocking, saw hiring appetite return to last year’s trend fairly quickly. Others have closed their gaps more recently, including production and manufacturing, customer service, and software development. 
  • Postings remain quite weak in several pandemic-exposed sectors like food preparation and service. The gap was actually slightly smaller than earlier in December, only because postings in the sector were falling at a faster pace over the same time last year, albeit from a much higher level. Hiring appetite also remains quite depressed in sports, as well as aviation. 
  • A range of sectors have gaps tracking similarly to the economy-wide trend, including driving, installation and maintenance, as well as administrative assistance.

The public health situation and its economic spillovers continue to change on a daily basis. We’ll be regularly updating this data as conditions evolve.

Methodology

To measure the trends in job postings, we calculated the 7-day moving average of the number of job postings on Indeed Canada. We index each day’s 7-day moving average to the start of February (Feb 1, 2020 = 100 for 2020 data, and so on).

We report how the trend in job postings this year differs from last year, in order to focus on the recent changes in labor market conditions due to COVID-19. For example: if job postings increased 30% from February 1, 2019, to April 10, 2019, but only 20% from February 1, 2020, to April 10, 2020, then the index would have risen from 100 to 130 in 2019 and 100 to 120 in 2020. The year-to-date trend in job postings would therefore be down 7.7% on April 10 (120 is 7.7% below 130) in 2020 relative to 2019.

For new postings, we calculate a similar metric but the underlying measure is the number of postings that have been on Indeed for seven days or less.

Information based on publicly available information on the Indeed Canada website (and other countries named in the post), limited to Canada, is not a projection of future events, and includes both paid and unpaid job solicitations.