The number of employees receiving pay and benefits from their employer – also known to Statistics Canada as “payroll employees in its Survey of Employment, Payroll and Hours – increased by 23,300 or 0.1 per cent in May 2023. Job vacancies widely declined by 26,000 or 3.3 per cent to 759,000. Bucking national trends, however, finance and insurance was one of three sectors where job vacancies increased.

In addition to the overall downward trend observed in the past year, they say month-over-month and year-over-year average weekly earnings were up. Month-over-month, average weekly earnings were up 0.4 per cent, compared to a 0.5 per cent increase recorded in April 2023. Year-over-year, average weekly earnings were up 3.6 per cent in May.

Back to job vacancies, they say “compared with the peak of just over 1-million unfilled positions reached in May 2022, job vacancies were down by 244,300 (down 24.3 per cent) in May 2023.” Finance and insurance job vacancies increased by 3,000 or 11.3 per cent in May 2023 to 29,900. 

The insurance industry’s trends, however, were not the same in other sectors, at all. Overall, in Quebec the number of vacancies fell by 10,800 or 5.3 per cent to 193,900 in May. Despite this, Quebec continued to have the highest job vacancy rate – 4.8 per cent – out of all the provinces, followed closely by British Columbia with a vacancy rate of 4.7 per cent. Manitoba reported the second highest decline in the number of vacancies in May 2023, with those numbers falling 3,700 to 24,000, while Saskatchewan vacancies declined 2,400 to 22,000. The number was unchanged in the other provinces during the month of May.