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Canadian Job Postings Through April 23: Still Rolling

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Job postings climb further above pre-pandemic level.

Key points 

  • Total job postings on Indeed Canada were up 21% on April 23, compared to early February 2020. 
  • The gap over last February’s level is up 25 percentage points since early February 2021, driven by a strong pace of new postings. 
  • Overall momentum has continued despite some softening in certain pandemic-exposed sectors since the start of the third wave. 

We regularly update this report to track the pandemic’s effects on the labor market. Our methodology changed at the start of 2021, as explained in the methodology note at the end of the post.

As of April 23, total job postings on Indeed Canada were up 21% from their February 1, 2020 levels, after adjusting for seasonal trends. Postings cleared their pre-pandemic level midway through February, after plunging 47% at the start of the pandemic. Overall, job postings are up a solid 25 percentage points since the start of February, including a 6 point gain over the past month.

Line graph titled “Canadian job postings surge past their pre-crisis level.” With a vertical axis ranging from -60% to 30%, Indeed tracked the percent change in total Canada job postings between February 1, 2020 and April 23, 2021. As of April 23, total job postings on Indeed Canada were up 21% from their February 1, 2020 levels.

Recent growth in total job postings has been driven by solid momentum in the number of new job postings being added to Indeed Canada. As of April 23, new job postings were up an impressive 30% from last February, rebounding to a similar to the pace they’d been running at in recent weeks prior to the Easter long weekend. It appears many employers are looking through the third wave’s hit to the economy, and ahead to a brighter outlook. This growth in strong employment opportunities should be an important boost in helping the elevated number of jobless Canadians find new work.

Line graph titled “New postings dip over Easter, but momentum remains strong.” With a vertical axis ranging from -80% to 40%, Indeed tracked the percent change in total Canada job postings between February 1, 2020 and April 23, 2021. As of April 23, new job postings were up 30% from the start of February 2020. 

Strength across provinces

Job postings are furthest above last February’s level in Atlantic Canada and Quebec. Still, momentum has been solid across the board, with Ontario and Alberta making impressive gains since February, while B.C. and Manitoba, have improved a tad more slowly.

Table titled “Job postings above pre-pandemic levels in all provinces.” Indeed compared the change in Canada job postings between February 1, 2020 and April 23, 2021, across all provinces. Job postings are stronger compared to pre-pandemic levels in smaller provinces, especially in Atlantic Canada, and Quebec. 

Postings in most sectors have cleared their pre-pandemic levels 

Job postings now exceed their pre-pandemic levels across most of the economy. In some cases, the gap is wide, with nursing, construction, loading and stocking, and software development all well above their February 2020 level. Meanwhile, there have been solid rebounds similar to the overall trend across a range of areas including installation and maintenance, cleaning and sanitation, and management.  

Table titled “Job postings quite strong outside pandemic-exposed sectors.” Indeed compared the percent change in total Canada job postings between February 1, 2020 and April 23, 2021, across various sectors divided into sections “Stronger than average,” “Similar to average.” and “Weaker than average.” Postings in some areas are now well above where they were in early 2020. 

On the flip side, hiring appetite remains weak in several pandemic sectors. While postings in areas like food preparation and service, as well as hospitality and tourism, are up since February, they’ve lost some ground in recent weeks, likely reflecting the impacts of the pandemic’s third wave. How poorly employment in these sectors fare in the upcoming April Labour Force Survey will likely depend on how employers weigh the trade-off between the near-term hit to activity versus the potentially brighter outlook this summer. 

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

All figures in this blogpost are the percentage change in seasonally-adjusted job postings since February 1, 2020, using a seven-day trailing average. February 1, 2020, is our pre-pandemic baseline. We seasonally adjust each series based on historical patterns in 2017, 2018, and 2019. Each series, including the national trend, occupational sectors, and sub-national geographies, is seasonally adjusted separately. 

This blogpost is based on publicly available information on the Indeed Canada website and any other countries if named in the post. Unless specified otherwise, it is limited to Canada, is not a projection of future events, and includes both paid and unpaid job solicitations.