This Labour Market Bulletin provides an analysis of Labour Force Survey results for the province of Manitoba, including the regions of Winnipeg, Northern Manitoba and Southern Manitoba.
Manitoba continues to demonstrate steady job growth with employment increasing by 5,200 since the second quarter. However, amongst the Western provinces, Manitoba continues to demonstrate strong quarterly job growth over this period, falling only behind British Columba (9,100).Footnote 1
During this quarter, full-time employment increased by 1,300, while part-time employment increased by 3,800. Over the same period, Manitoba's public sector employment grew by 1.2% (1,900) and the private sector employment also grew by 0.5%, (2,000). Self-employment increased by 1,100.Footnote 2
The Conference Board of Canada forecasts Manitoba's economic growth rate to fall from 2.8% in 2017 to 0.3% in 2018. The slower growth will be the result of upcoming mine closures, a declining construction industry, declining business investments, and decreased household consumption.Footnote 3 Additionally, the Province of Manitoba announced its intent to reduce the civil service by 8% over three years.Footnote 4 Fortunately, with the implementation of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), Manitoba's agriculture and manufacturing industries should benefit from increased free trade with the European Union.Footnote 5Unemployment
Manitoba's unemployment rate remained relatively unchanged in the third quarter, decreasing by 0.2 of a percentage point to 5.2%. The province had the second lowest unemployment rate in Western Canada, behind British Columbia (5.1%), yet well below the national average of 6.2%.
|Seasonally Adjusted Data||3rd Quarter 2017||2nd Quarter 2017||3rd Quarter 2016||Quarterly Variation||Yearly Variation|
|Population 15 + ('000)||1,015.7||1,011.9||1,001.2||3.8||0.4||14.5||1.4|
|Labour Force ('000)||682.8||678.7||675.8||4.1||0.6||7.0||1.0|
|    Full-Time ('000)||522.0||520.7||510.6||1.3||0.2||11.4||2.2|
|    Part-Time ('000)||125.4||121.6||123.3||3.8||3.1||2.1||1.7|
|Participation Rate (%)||67.2||67.1||67.5||0.1||-||-0.3||-|
|Employment Rate (%)||63.7||63.5||63.3||0.2||-||0.4||-|
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - CANSIM Table 282-0087
In Manitoba, the unemployment rate of those aged 15-24 increased this quarter by 0.2 percentage points to 11.2%. By comparison, the unemployment rate for those aged 25 years and older decreased by 0.3 percentage points to 4.0%. Compared to last year, youth unemployment decreased by 2.4 percentage points and the unemployment rate for those 25 years and older, decreased 0.8 percentage points. Manitoba followed the national trend for both age groups over the same period, with the national youth unemployment rate decreasing by -2.2 percentage points and those 25 years and older decreasing by -0.5 percentage points.Footnote 6
The unemployment rate for men aged 15 to 24 years old grew to 12.2%, an increase of 0.9 percentage points from the previous quarter. However, the unemployment rate for women aged 15 to 24 decreased by 0.4 percentage points to 10.2% over the same period. Since the last quarter, the unemployment rate for young men was around 3 times higher than of men 25 years and over. Whereas, the unemployment rate for young women was approximately 2.5 times higher than for women 25 years and older.
|Seasonally Adjusted Data||3rd Quarter 2017 (%)||2nd Quarter 2017 (%)||3rd Quarter 2016 (%)|| Quarterly Variation
| Yearly Variation
|25 years and over||4.0||4.3||4.8||-0.3||-0.8|
|Men - 25 years and over||4.0||4.6||5.2||-0.6||-1.2|
|Women - 25 years and over||4.0||4.0||4.3||0.0||-0.3|
|15 to 24 years||11.2||11.0||13.6||0.2||-2.4|
|Men - 15 to 24 years||12.2||11.3||15.6||0.9||-3.4|
|Women - 15 to 24 years||10.2||10.6||11.5||-0.4||-1.3|
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - CANSIM Table 282-0087
In the third quarter (Q3) of 2017, the total population aged 15+ in Manitoba was around 1.0 million. The Indigenous population living off-reserve accounted for 11.6% of that, or 117,400 people. Employment among Indigenous people in Manitoba stood at 68,400, representing an increase of +3,800 (+5.9%) from a year earlier (Q3 2016). The bulk of employment gains were in full-time positions (+3,200 or +5.9%), with an increase in part-time employment as well (+600 or +5.1%).
The unemployment rate among the Indigenous population was 9.8% in Q3 2017, representing a decrease of -3.8 percentage points (pp) from the previous year. Among the non-Indigenous population, the unemployment rate was 5.1% (-0.9pp). In Q3 2017, the participation rate of Indigenous people stood at 64.5% (-0.9pp from Q3 2016) while among non-Indigenous population, it was 68.5% (-0.2pp). The employment rate for Indigenous people was 58.2% (+1.7pp); for the non-Indigenous population, it stood at 65.0% (+0.4pp).
| 3-month moving averages
Seasonally unadjusted data
|Indigenous|| Yearly variation
|Non-Indigenous|| Yearly variation
|Q3 2017||Q3 2016||number||%||Q3 2017||Q3 2016||number||%|
|Population 15 + ('000)||117.4||114.3||3.1||2.7||898.4||886.8||11.6||1.3|
|Labour Force ('000)||75.8||74.7||1.1||1.5||615.4||608.8||6.6||1.1|
|    Full-Time ('000)||56.1||52.9||3.2||6.0||479.1||469.9||9.2||2.0|
|    Part-Time ('000)||12.3||11.7||0.6||5.1||104.9||102.7||2.2||2.1|
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - ESDC custom table.
Employment by industry
In the third quarter of 2017, while Manitoba's goods-producing sector shrank by 1,400, it still employed 500 (+0.3%) more workers compared to the same time last year. Since the third quarter of 2016, strong employment gains were made in both construction (+1,700) and manufacturing (+1,100), yet these gains were offset by job losses in both the agriculture (-1,200) and utilities (-1,500) industries. Looking ahead, the goods-producing sector may contract further in the long-term as additional job losses are expected as Manitoba Hydro's Keeyask project winds-down (construction) and as mines in northern Manitoba near the end of their production lifespan.
In the past quarter, the good-producing sector saw losses in construction (-1,500), utilities (-900), and forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, oil and gas (-700). Only agriculture (+1,000) and manufacturing (+700) saw increases in employment over the same period. The near completion of harvesting summer crops and the continuation of fall field work across the province should contribute to job growth in agriculture until the end of the Fall season.Footnote 7 Winnipeg's manufacturing industry should continue strong in the long-term as companies such as New Flyer, Magellan Aerospace, and Boeing continue to build upon their past success. Employment should continue to increase in manufacturing and agriculture following the implementation of both CETA and the New West Trade Partnership Agreement with Western Canada.Footnote 8, Footnote 9
On a year-over-year basis, the services-producing sector experienced strong employment growth across the province, with employment increasing by 2.7% (+13,100). Almost all service industries experienced strong employment gains, with the strongest growth in the educational services (+3,000); and finance, insurance, real estate and leasing (+2,700). Health care and social assistance, and other services industries each shrank by 500 workers.
In the third quarter, Manitoba's services-producing sector increased by 6,500 with gains in the education services industry (+4,100) and in the business, building and other support services (+1,700). However, most notable job losses were in professional, scientific and technical services (-700) and in public administration (-900). Employment in the services sector may now decrease further in the long-term as the provincial government announced its intent to reduce the public service by 8% over the next three years.Footnote 10
|Seasonally Adjusted Data ('000)||3rd Quarter 2017||2nd Quarter 2017||3rd Quarter 2016||Quarterly Variation||Yearly Variation|
|Total employed, all industries||647.5||642.3||633.8||5.2||0.8||13.7||2.2|
| Forestry, fishing, mining,
quarrying, oil and gas
|Transportation and warehousing||36.5||36.7||35.7||-0.2||-0.5||0.8||2.2|
| Finance, insurance, real
estate and leasing
| Professional, scientific
and technical services
| Business, building
and other support services
| Health care and social
| Information, culture and
| Accommodation and food
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - CANSIM Table 282-0088
Within the past year, employment grew in all the Manitoba regions, except for the Parklands and North, and Interlake regions. The unemployment rate decreased in five of the six regions, with the exception being the Southwest. The unemployment rate in Interlake saw the largest decrease by 2.6 percentage points to 4.1%, as overall employment also decreased by 800 workers since the same time last year.
Beginning October 1, 2017 the province of Manitoba increased its minimum wage by $0.15 to $11.15 an hour. The increase is part of provincial legislation that ties minimum wage to inflation and would increase annually. The legislation does permit the province to freeze the minimum wage whenever there is an economic downturn. Footnote 11
With a growing provincial debt, Crown Corporations and the Provincial Government are planning rate increases and considering a new healthcare premium to ensure the continuation of services to Manitobans. For instance, Manitoba Hydro increased its rates by 3.36% a year for the next two years due to the rising costs of the Keeyask Hydro project. Manitoba Public Insurance is requesting a rate hike of 2.7% next year from the Public Utilities Board, seeks to cover $85 million in losses from hail storm damages.Footnote 12 Additionally, the Manitoba Government announced that it is considering introducing a healthcare premium in an attempt to offset rising costs.Footnote 13
|Not Seasonally Adjusted Data||Employment||Unemployment Rate|
| 3rd Quarter 2017
| 3rd Quarter 2016
| Yearly Variation
| 3rd Quarter 2017
| 3rd Quarter 2016
| Yearly Variation
|South Central and North Central||58.0||54.2||7.0||4.0||5.6||-1.6|
|Parklands and North||35.2||36.9||-4.6||4.6||4.9||-0.3|
Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey - CANSIM Table 282-0122
South Central and North Central reported a quarterly increase in healthcare and social assistance (+500), and agriculture (+1,900).Footnote 14 The increase in agricultural employment will soon end and should then fall sharply, as various harvests are now completed or nearing completion. Construction did increase this quarter (+300) and should remain stable as construction begins on the Roquette pea-processing plant. Completion of the plant is scheduled for early 2019.Footnote 15
Southwest experienced a noticeable decrease in agriculture related employment (-1,800) since the third quarter of 2016. However, the region experienced increases in manufacturing (+700) and utilities (+800) over the same period.Footnote 16
Employment in Winnipeg increased by 2.3% over the previous year due to strong employment growth in manufacturing (+3,800), and in the health care and social services industries (+3,200). A good example of Winnipeg's strong manufacturing industry is Magellan Aerospace, who recently announced a 10-year contract fabricating metallic exhaust systems for Airbus at their Winnipeg facility.Footnote 17 However, employment within the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority should decrease in the near future as the province issued about 700 deletion notices to hospital support staff and 512 deletion notices to nurses this summer. Employees who receive deletion notices will have the option to either; accept a new position, apply for a different one, be bumped into a new role, or lose their job.Footnote 18, Footnote 19
With the beginning of the hockey season, the True North Sports + Entertainment organization is expected to be an economic boon to the province as it generated $210 million to Manitoba's economy during the 2015/2016 fiscal year. The organization owns and operates the Winnipeg Jets of the National Hockey League and the Manitoba Moose of the American Hockey League, as well as other entertainment facilities in Winnipeg.Footnote 20
Parklands and North region experienced a decrease in employment by 4.6% compared to the same period last year due to a decline in the services-producing sector. The region experienced a loss of 1,000 jobs in accommodation and food services, and 900 positions in other services during the past year. Mining and forestry also decreased by 100 jobs in the past year, and further job losses are imminent as Vale closes its Birchtree mine near Thompson. About 60 employees are to be assigned to asset recovery until November, when the mine will continue on care and maintenance, after which only six employees will remain on site. The United Steel Workers Local 6166 reports that 94 employees accepted a retirement incentive package.Footnote 21
The mining industry in the region may see a turnaround, as mineral exploration near Swan Lake has shown promising results in its lithium and gold deposits. Pending further exploration, new mining opportunities may emerge next year.Footnote 22, Footnote 23, Footnote 24
Economic and transportation challenges persist in the Town of Churchill as rail service remains suspended. Repairs remain on hold with no announcement on the sale of the rail line by Omnitrax. The Town of Churchill is awaiting delivery of 2.2 million litres of propane by barge from Quebec that will help heat the homes over the winter. To add further concern to the region, Via Rail announced it will be shipping out its stranded passenger cars in Churchill on the arriving barge back to Montreal. The company has also announced it will be reducing its commuter rail services in the region starting in November.Footnote 25
In preparing this document, the authors have taken care to provide clients with labour market information that is timely and accurate at the time of publication. Since labour market conditions are dynamic, some of the information presented here may have changed since this document was published. Users are encouraged to also refer to other sources for additional information on the local economy and labour market. Information contained in this document does not necessarily reflect official policies of Employment and Social Development Canada.
Prepared by: Labour Market Information (LMI) Directorate, Service Canada, Manitoba.
For further information, please contact the LMI team.
For information on the Labour Force Survey, please visit the Statistics Canada website.
- Footnote 1
Statistics Canada. Table 282-0087 - Labour Force survey estimates (LFS), by sex and age group, seasonally adjusted and unadjusted, quarterly (persons x 1,000). (accessed October 6, 2017)
- Footnote 2
Statistics Canada. Table 282-0089 - Labour force survey estimates (LFS), employment by class of worker and sex, seasonally adjusted and unadjusted, quarterly (persons x 1,000), CANSIM (database). (accessed October 8, 2017)
- Footnote 3
The Conference Board of Canada. Provincial Outlook Economic Forecast: Manitoba - Summer 2017. Ottawa: The Conference Board of Canada, 2017.
- Footnote 4
- Footnote 5
Global Affairs Canada. Benefits for Manitoba. (accessed October 5, 2017)
- Footnote 6
Statistics Canada. Table 282-0087 - Labour force survey estimates (LFS), employment by class of worker and sex, seasonally adjusted and unadjusted, monthly (person), CANSIM (database). (accessed September 13, 2017)
- Footnote 7
- Footnote 8
- Footnote 9
New West Partnership. NWPTA - The Agreement. (accessed October 6, 2017)
- Footnote 10
- Footnote 11
- Footnote 12
- Footnote 13
- Footnote 14
Statistics Canada. Table 282-0124 - Labour Force survey estimates (LFS), employment by economic region based on 2011 Census boundaries and North American Industry Classification System(NAICS), 3-month moving average, unadjusted for seasonality, CANSIM (database). (accessed October 6, 2017)
- Footnote 15
- Footnote 16
Statistics Canada. Table 282-0124 - Labour Force survey estimates (LFS), employment by economic region based on 2011 Census boundaries and North American Industry Classification System(NAICS), 3-month moving average, unadjusted for seasonality quarterly (persons x 1,000) , CANSIM (database). (accessed October 6, 2017)
- Footnote 17
- Footnote 18
- Footnote 19
- Footnote 20
- Footnote 21
- Footnote 22
- Footnote 23
- Footnote 24
- Footnote 25
Winnipeg Free Press. Robertson, Dylan. Via Rail to ship train out of Churchill, cut service. October 5, 2017