Canadian job market increasingly a tale of have and have not occupations: CIBC

Canadian job market increasingly a tale of have and have not occupations: CIBC 
Some occupations find employers lining up to hire while others face the 
prospect of chronic unemployment 
TORONTO, Dec. 3, 2012 /CNW/ - Canada's job market shows a growing divide 
between have and have not occupations, finds a new report from CIBC World 
"On one hand, jobs go unfilled for long stretches due to a lack of skilled 
applicants," says CIBC Deputy Chief Economist Benjamin Tal. "In fact, the 
Prime Minister recently described skills shortages in the Canadian labour 
market as 'the biggest challenge our country faces'. 
"But on the other end of the labour market spectrum, there is growing evidence 
that the size of the labour surplus pool is also on the rise. For a number of 
occupations, employment opportunities are increasingly disappearing. This 
labour market mismatch is big enough not only to reduce the effectiveness of 
monetary policy, but also to limit the growth potential of the labour market 
and the economy as a whole." 
In his analysis, Mr. Tal found that traditional occupations like butchers, 
bakers, tailors, labourers in manufacturing, office managers and clerks are 
showing signs of labour surplus, along with secondary and elementary school 
He found that the occupations with signs of skills shortages include many 
positions in traditional health care roles, such as doctors, nurses and 
dentists. The health care list also includes optometrists, chiropractors, 
pharmacists, dietitians and nutritionists. Mining, engineering and science 
occupations are also facing skill shortages. 
Skill Shortages 
No less than 30 per cent of businesses indicate that they face a skilled 
labour shortage, which is double the rate seen in early 2010. "The recent 
acceleration in that ratio has coincided with a stagnating employment 
rate—loosely illustrating the negative impact of skill shortages on 
employment growth," notes Mr. Tal. "What's more, while you will not see it in 
the relatively stable trajectory of the unemployment rate, the number of job 
vacancies reported by firms has risen by close to 16 per cent over the past 
year—bringing the vacancy-to-unemployment ratio to its highest level since 
Statistics Canada started publishing vacancy information. It is hardly a 
surprise that the highest vacancy rate is in Alberta, followed by 
Mr. Tal identified 25 job groups that have shown signs of consistent skill 
shortages. By far, the largest skill shortage was found in health-related 
occupations, the mining industry, advanced manufacturing and business 
services. Put together, those occupations account for 21 per cent of total 
employment in Canada. "One-fifth of the Canadian labour market is currently 
showing signs of skilled labour shortage," says Mr. Tal. "The average 
unemployment rate of this pool of occupations is just over one per cent and 
their wages are now rising by an average annual rate of 3.9 per cent — more 
than double the rate seen in the economy as a whole. 
"Overall employment in this group is rising by 2.1 per cent — much faster 
than the speed seen in the rest of the market, but obviously not fast enough 
to dent the labour market skill scarcity. In this context, the recently 
announced government plans to admit between 53,000 and 55,000 new Canadians in 
2013 through an overhauled federal skilled worker program is a welcome 
development. However, it's simply not large enough to turn things around. 
Ditto for the increased focus on apprenticeship as a possible solution to the 
chronic shortage in skilled trades. Despite recent program improvements, the 
number of certificates granted to apprentices is still a fraction of the 
overall size of the skilled trades labour pool." 
Labour Surplus 
At the opposite end of the labour spectrum, Mr. Tal identified 20 occupations 
that were in a surplus category as demonstrated by higher/rising unemployment 
rate and decelerating wage growth. These jobs account for 16 per cent of total 
unemployment in Canada while their real wage growth was nil over the past 
year. Excluding this pool of unemployed, the national unemployment rate would 
have been almost 1.3 percentage points lower. 
The average duration of unemployment in Canada currently stands at 16 weeks, 
which is five weeks above the prerecession level. There are currently 250,000 
Canadians who have been unemployed for over six months - 18 per cent of total 
unemployment in Canada. 
"Clearly the larger this measure is, the more serious are the policy and 
economic implications of a given unemployment rate," adds Mr. Tal. "Longer 
term unemployment was on a clear downward trend over the past two years, but 
its current rate is still notably higher than its long-term average. That is 
mostly the case among Canadians over the age of 45, suggesting that retraining 
must be an integral part of any solution. 
"The practical implication of the growing job market mismatch in the Canadian 
economy is that this measure of long-term unemployment is more likely to start 
rising from its already elevated level. In fact, the exit rate from 
unemployment (the likelihood of exiting unemployment, for a job or for some 
other reason, within the coming three months after being unemployed for less 
than three months) is starting to head in the wrong direction, implying an 
upcoming upward pressure on long-term unemployment." 
|25 Occupations Showing Signs of   |20 Occupations Showing Signs of   |
|Skills Shortages                  |Labour Surplus                    |
|Managers in engineering,          |Managers in manufacturing and     |
|architecture, science & info      |utilities                         |
|systems                           |                                  |
|Managers in health, education,    |Clerical supervisors              |
|social and community services     |                                  |
|Managers in construction and      |Clerical occupations              |
|transportation                    |                                  |
|Auditors, accountants and         |Clerical occupations, general     |
|investment professionals          |office skills                     |
|Human resources and business      |Office equipment operators        |
|service professionals             |                                  |
|Professional occupations in       |Finance and insurance clerks      |
|natural and applied sciences      |                                  |
|Physical science professionals    |Mail and message distribution     |
|                                  |occupations                       |
|Life science professionals        |Secondary & elementary teachers   |
|                                  |and counsellors                   |
|Civil, mechanical, electrical and |Sales and service supervisors     |
|chemical engineers                |                                  |
|Other engineers                   |Cashiers                          |
|Professional occupations in health|Occupations in food and beverage  |
|                                  |services                          |
|Physicians, dentists and          |Tour & recreational guides and    |
|veterinarians                     |amusement occupations             |
|Optometrists, chiropractors &     |Other attendants in travel,       |
|other health diagnosing/treating  |accommodation and recreation      |
|professionals                     |                                  |
|Pharmacists, dietitians and       |Technical occupations in personal |
|nutritionists                     |service                           |
|Therapy and assessment            |Other occupations in personal     |
|professionals                     |service                           |
|Nurse supervisors and registered  |Butchers & bakers                 |
|nurses                            |                                  |
|Technical and related occupations |Upholsterers, tailors, shoe       |
|in health                         |repairers, jewellers and related  |
|                                  |occupations                       |
|Medical technologists and         |Fishing vessel masters and        |
|technicians (except dental health)|skippers and fishermen/women      |
|Technical occupations in dental   |Machine operators & related       |
|health care                       |workers in metal/mineral products |
|                                  |processing                        |
|Other technical occupations in    |Machine operators & related       |
|health care (except dental)       |workers in pulp & paper production|
|                                  |& wood processing                 |
|Psychologists, social workers,    |
|counsellors, clergy and probation |
|officers                          |
|Supervisors, mining, oil and gas  |
|Underground miners, oil and gas   |
|drillers and related workers      |
|Supervisors in manufacturing      |
|Supervisors, processing           |
|occupations                       |
The complete CIBC World Markets report is available at: 
CIBC's wholesale banking business provides a range of integrated credit and 
capital markets products, investment banking, and merchant banking to clients 
in key financial markets in North America and around the world. We provide 
innovative capital solutions and advisory expertise across a wide range of 
industries as well as top-ranked research for our corporate, government and 
institutional clients. 
Benjamin Tal, Deputy Chief Economist, CIBC World Markets Inc. at (416)  
956-3698, or Kevin Dove, Communications and Public 
Affairs at 416-980-8835, 
To view this news release in HTML formatting, please use the following URL: 
CO: CIBC World Markets
ST: Ontario
-0- Dec/03/2012 14:49 GMT
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