Lowest Jobless Rate in 42 Years

CBJ — The national unemployment rate hit its lowest level in 42 years after the country added 79,000 jobs last month.

The jobless rate was pushed down two-tenths of a percentage point to 5.7% according to figures released by Statistics Canada.

Every province added jobs during the month, but more than half of the new jobs came in Alberta and Quebec, with each adding more than 26,000 jobs.

December’s numbers bring a close to the data for 2017 as a whole, which ended up being Canada’s best year for jobs since 2002, with 423,000 jobs added.

Meanwhile, south of the border, U.S. employers added 148,000 jobs in December, a modest gain but still enough to suggest that the economy entered the new year with solid momentum. The American unemployment rate remained 4.1% for a third straight month, the lowest level since 2000, according to data released by the U.S. Labor Department.

For all of 2017, employers added nearly 2.1 million jobs, enough to lower the American unemployment rate from 4.7% a year ago.