Canada’s Job Market Is Changing Fast As Vacancies Fall Sharply

Considering a new job? Might want to start applying, because the balance might shift back to employers soon. Statistics Canada (Stat Can) quarterly data shows a substantial decline in both vacant job listings and the job vacancy rate in Q4 2022. Despite the quick move, diving into the monthly numbers shows a higher-level may downplay just how rapidly Canada’s vacant jobs are vaporizing. 

Canadian Job Vacancies Reveal A Sharp Quarterly Decline 

Canada’s job vacancies are coming down fast from the peak reached less than a year before. Vacant roles fell 8.2% (-78,600 jobs) to 885,900 roles in the fourth quarter of 2022. This brings the vacancy rate down 0.5 points to 4.9%—a sharp decline for just a few months. Both the number of vacant roles and the rate are the lowest since Q2 2021. 

It’s A Different Market From Peak, But Vacancies Are Elevated

Canada’s fast-changing job market just logged a second consecutive quarterly decline. Vacant roles have dropped 17.1% (-176,100), while the rate has fallen 1.1 points since both peaked in Q2 2022. Both numbers remain higher than pre-pandemic numbers, but the market is changing rapidly with the hiring surge.  

Canadian Job Vacancies

Unfilled job vacancies across Canada.

Source: Statistics Canada; Better Dwelling.

Monthly Data Shows Job Vacancies Are Disappearing Fast

The quarterly data downplays just how fast Canada’s job vacancies are disappearing. The fourth quarter started with 902,600 vacant roles in October, but fell to 754,300 by December. Similarly, the vacancy rate went from 5.0% in October to 4.2% by the end of the quarter in December. To put it bluntly, over two-thirds of the drop for both the number of vacant roles and the rate, occurred within the last quarter.

Quarterly data attributes the falling vacancy rate to payroll, but that trend isn’t so clear in the monthly data. In the final quarter of 2022, payrolls declined by 20,400 employees from October to December.   

Canadian Job Vacancy Rate

The percent of total jobs in Canada that are unfilled each month.  

Source: Statistics Canada; Better Dwelling.

Canada’s job market still has significant slack, according to the latest data. However, the quarterly focus might downplay just how fast things have tightened recently. Just one more quarter like the one we just saw, and Q2 starts around the same level the country was pre-pandemic. 

7 Comments

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  • Mark Bayly 1 year ago

    Should define what you mean by jobs. Working part time at Timmy’s is not a job.

    • Better Dwelling 1 year ago

      It is to the people that have to support their family on that income. 🙂

      A point we’ll discuss in a future article is the growing average wages of the jobs offered. The largest industries are seeing fairly high growth, and sectors like healthcare are providing a good chunk of vacancies.

  • Ayub Eskandari 1 year ago

    Canadian policy licensing in medicine has not increased I am a Canadian citizen an obgyn since 1980 skilled experienced reside in Richmond hill Ontario refused licence on groundless issues unrelated to job.no one would explain it why .
    I think it’s high time the government of Canada to break this monopoly .

  • John 1 year ago

    Did anyone believe the original data on the number of job vacancies? Mostly fiction.

  • Jujein 1 year ago

    Most of these vacant jobs are the jobs nobody wants. Like a Tim Hortons job. Now that Canadians are getting poorer and can’t afford Tim hortons the hiring freezes will commence. Most job ads for more higher profile job like a simple bank teller are fake and something for an HR rep to do. Getting jerked around leads to people just dropping out of the workforce and not caring anymore. Bring on the collapse.

    Home in suburban Toronto, 1960, for C$14,800. Roughly, 400 oz of gold.

    House down the street sold last fall for just over C$1,000,000. Roughly, 400 oz of gold.

    I’m not a gold hut but here’s the rub here. The average Canadian earner in the early 60’s can earn $15k gross after 3 years of work. The average Canadian TODAY can earn $1 million gross after 12 years of work. Most people are below average….if the average Canadian is 4 times poorer than his or her 60’s counterpart what about the rest? As I said it needs to collapse. Canada is done for. Thoughts?

  • Putz 1 year ago

    Thank God that the Apocalypse is here.

  • John ferreira 1 year ago

    Job vacancies being filled or companies not hiring anymore due to the Boc forced economic slow down?

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