Ontario, March 2024 - Job market snapshot

Get a snapshot of key facts about the state of Ontario's labour market in the past month.


Employment in Ontario grew slightly by 26,100 (+0.3%) in March, as a small loss in full-time jobs (-0.0%; -1,400) was offset by gains in part-time jobs (+2.0%; 27,500). The unemployment rate increased to 6.7% (+0.2 percentage points). Employment gains were observed in both Ontario's goods-producing sector (+0.7%; +11,000) and services-producing sector (+0.2%; +15,100).

Ontario's job market by the numbers

Working population


Up 0.3% since February

Unemployment rate


Up 0.2 pts since February

Source: Statistics Canada - Table 14-10-0287-01 - Labour force characteristics, monthly, seasonally adjusted and trend-cycle, last 5 months

Industries in focus

Health care and social assistance

Number of jobs increased 1.5%



The health care and social assistance sector experienced notable employment growth in March (+1.5%; +14,700). The provincial government recently announced several investments to bolster healthcare employment, such as supporting a new medical school in Vaughan, affiliated with York University, that would primarily focus on training family doctors.

Accommodation and food services

Number of jobs decreased -3.0%



The accommodation and food services sector reported the largest losses in March (-3.0%; -12,700). Industry reports suggest while spending on hotel accommodations showed some signs of improvement, the restaurant industry continues to face challenges due to inflation. The recent freeze on alcohol taxes brings some financial relief for restaurants amidst rising bankruptcies in the sector.


Number of jobs increased 0.9%



Employment in the manufacturing sector increased in March (+0.9%; +7,100) following three consecutive months of losses. This is in alignment with S&P Global Manufacturing PMI, which increased to 49.8 in March. Both output and new orders saw marginal declines, however, hiring continues as companies anticipate better economic conditions. Additionally, manufacturing sales in Ontario rose 3.8% in January. Several notable investments took place in March, including at SC Johnson in Brantford; Roshel Inc. in Brampton; Tillsonburg Custom Foods in Trenton and St. Marys; and EcoPoly Properties Inc. in Orillia.

Source: Statistics Canada - Table 14-10-0355-02 - Employment by industry, monthly, seasonally adjusted (x 1,000)

Unemployment rate by region

Hamilton–Niagara Peninsula
Stratford–Bruce Peninsula

The unemployment rate was lowest in Stratford–Bruce Peninsula and highest in Toronto.

Source: Statistics Canada - Table 14-10-0387-01 - Labour force characteristics, three-month moving average, unadjusted for seasonality, last 5 months

A closer look at some regions


3,808,100 people employed

Up 1.3% since March 2023

Employment in the Toronto economic region increased by 47,400 from March 2023 to January 2024 (+1.3%). The unemployment rate in Toronto was recorded at 7.3%, increasing by 1.8 percentage points year-over-year. The economic region also saw the largest proportional increase in its population (+4.3%; +257,000) and the labour force grew by 3.3% over the year. Investments in affordable housing and other construction developments in the region will support job growth. What else is happening in this region?

Stratford–Bruce Peninsula

158,200 people employed

Up 2.7% since March 2023

The Stratford-Bruce Peninsula economic region had the lowest unemployment rate in Ontario in March 2024, at 4.1%, falling by 1.8 percentage points year-over-year. Employment in the region increased by 4,200 (+2.7%) and there was a small increase in the labour force (+1,300; +0.8%) between March 2023 and March 2024. In other news, upgrades to the Huron County public works patrol yard in Wingham is underway. What else is happening in this region?


399,400 people employed

Up 4.1% since March 2023

In March, the London economic region experienced the highest proportional gains in employment (+4.1%; +15,700) year-over-year. Furthermore, its labour force grew by 20,000 (+4.9%), while the unemployment rate in the region increased by 0.8 percentage points to 6.0%. Investments in the region’s infrastructure should continue to support job creation. What else is happening in this region?

Last data refresh: 2024-04-14 23:00:44

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