Construction employment stumbles in January

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CaDCR staff writer

While the construction sector lost 3,500 jobs in January, overall employment across Canada recorded a slight increase. According to the latest Survey of Employment, Payrolls, and Hours by Statistics Canada, the country added 39,800 positions, or 0.2 percent. Compared to January 2023, there was an overall gain of 212,900 jobs, marking a 1.2 percent increase.

However, construction employment faced a setback in January, with a decrease of 3,500 positions, equivalent to a 0.3 percent drop. This decline follows a previous gain of 1,400 positions in December 2023 and a period of little change in November. Since reaching its peak in June, payroll employment in the construction sector has been on a downward trend, resulting in a net loss of 8,800 positions, representing a 0.8 percent decrease from June 2023 to January 2024.

Breaking down the figures by segment, residential building construction experienced a loss of 1,500 positions in January, following four consecutive months of minimal change. Similarly, payroll employment in specialty trade contractors decreased by 1,500 positions in January 2024, while non-residential building construction and heavy and civil engineering construction remained relatively stable.

Across all sectors of the economy, there were 632,100 job vacancies in January, which remained largely unchanged from December but decreased by 34,800 positions, or 5.2 percent, compared to November. However, construction vacancies remained essentially flat during this period.

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