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For additional information relating to this article, please contact:

Mike Milloy Planning and Development Officer
Tel: 902-424-8800Email:

February 23, 2018

In the 3 months ending in November 2017, there were an average of 5,800 job vacancies in Nova Scotia (unadjusted for seasonality). This is 1,700 higher than reported in the same month of 2016.

Nova Scotia's job vacancy rate, the share of labour demand that is unfilled, was 1.5 per cent in November. Following a decline in the second half of 2016, the job vacancy rate has risen throughout 2017, signaling a tighter labour market in Nova Scotia. As the data are not adjusted for seasonality, some of this tightness in the labour market may be a seasonal phenomenon.  

Across Canada, job vacancy rates are highest in British Columbia (2.5 per cent), and lowest in Newfoundland and Labrador and Prince Edward Island (both 1.2 per cent).  Vacancy rates are up compared with the same month of 2016 in all provinces except Prince Edward Island (where they were stable).  

There were an average of 6.8 unemployed persons per job vacancy in Nova Scotia in the 3 months ending in November, up from 6.5 in the three months leading up to October. 

After increasing through late 2016, the ratio of unemployment-to-job-vacancy has been lower in recent months compared to early 2017, sending signs of tightening in Nova Scotia's labour market.  However, this also appears to be an emerging seasonal trend as the ratio is similar to levels reported in mid-2016.

All provinces report fewer unemployed persons per job vacancy in November 2017 compared with the same month last year.  British Columbia currently reports the tightest labour market conditions in Canada, with a job vacancy rate of 2.3 per cent and just 2.3 unemployed persons for each job vacancy. Newfoundland and Labrador reported the labour market conditions signaling the most slack, with 14 unemployed persons for each job vacancy. 

Source: Statistics Canada's Job Vacancies. CANSIM 284-0001 and 284-0003


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