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Thomas StorringDirector – Economics and Statistics
Tel: 902-424-2410Email:

April 18, 2024

Monthly (February 2024 vs January 2024, seasonally adjusted regular beneficiaries)

In February 2024, there were 22,640 Nova Scotians in receipt of regular employment insurance benefits (seasonally adjusted). Nova Scotia's seasonally adjusted regular employment insurance usage increased by 60 (+0.3%) from January to February 2024.

There were 470,530 Canadians that received regular employment insurance benefits in February 2024 (seasonally adjusted), a decrease of 120 (-0.03%) from January. 

When compared to January 2024, six provinces reported increases in regular beneficiaries with Ontario and Newfoundland and Labrador posting the fastest growth. The largest decline in percentage terms was reported in British Columbia.

The number of employment insurance beneficiaries amounted to 4.1% of the labour force in Nova Scotia in Febraury 2024. Nationally, the share of beneficiaries was 2.2% of the labour force.

Year-to-date (January-February 2024 vs January-February 2023)

Comparing the first two months of 2024 to the same period in 2023, Nova Scotia's employment insurance usage was up by 1.5%. National employment insurance usage was up by 19.2% with gains in eight provinces. The largest gains in employment insurance usage were reported in Ontario and Alberta, while the largest decline was in New Brunswick. 

Year-over-year (February 2024 vs February 2023, seasonally adjusted regular beneficiaries)

Use of employment insurance (as a share of the labour force) was lower for youth aged 15-24 and higher for workers aged 55 and older. Across all age cohorts, male use of employment insurance was higher as a share of the labour force than female use of employment insurance. 

Use of employment insurance was up for all male age cohorts from February 2023 to February 2024. Females aged 25+ saw declines in employment insurance usage, while female youth experienced no change from February 2023 to February 2024.

Comparing unadjusted regular beneficiaries for February 2024 against February 2023, use of employment insurance was down for all counties in Nova Scotia except Halifax, Colchester, Hants, Queens, Lunenburg and Pictou.

In percentage terms, the largest declines in employment insurance use from February 2023 to February 2024 were reported in Annapolis county. Halifax and Colchester reported the largest increases.

Source: Statistics Canada.  Table  14-10-0011-01   Employment insurance beneficiaries (regular benefits) by province and territory, monthly, seasonally adjustedTable  14-10-0323-01   Employment insurance beneficiaries by census division, monthly, unadjusted for seasonalityTable 14-10-0287-01  Labour force characteristics, monthly, seasonally adjusted and trend-cycle, last 5 months

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