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August 13, 2012
CALGARY, AB, Aug 13, 2012/ Troy Media/ – Last week Statistics Canada released the latest Labour Force Survey, which showed Alberta gained about 5,800 jobs in July.
Not all jobs, however, are the same – economists like to see gains in full-time positions as a sign of a healthy economy. On that front, Alberta is doing just fine.
In July 2012, there were just under 1.8 million people working in full-time jobs in the province while there were only 351,000 working part-time. Compared to the previous month, full-time jobs were up by about 15,300, whereas there were actually 9,600 fewer part-time jobs.
The graph illustrates the impact of the economic downturn in 2009 and 2010. Full-time positions slumped as companies shed workers. But interestingly, the number of part-time positions didn’t even wobble – in fact, they rose slightly.
But on the longer term trend, full-time work has advanced much more significantly than part-time jobs. Compared to a decade ago, there are nearly 30 per cent more full-time positions while there are only 17 per cent more part-time positions. Over that same time period Alberta’s population increased by 24 per cent.
Full-time jobs are preferable for the obvious reason that workers generally earn bigger paycheques and are often covered by employer benefits. When companies are adding more full-time positions it is a signal of economic confidence.
But no matter how robust the economy may become, there will always be a market for part-time jobs. Many Albertans such as students and stay-home caregivers may prefer part-time work for its flexibility and lower time commitment.
| ATB Financial
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