Stats Canada reports rising unemployment due to Target “effect” as retail sector contracts


According to Statistics Canada, last month accounted for a total of 19,700 job losses, the highest number since August 2014. Those affected by the cuts include sales staff, cashiers and clerks largely due to the closings of stores like Target Canada, Best Buy, Mexx, Smart Set, Indigo Books, and Sony.
But despite the huge job cuts, the retail sector remains the main source of employment in Canada.

Andrew Fields, Statscan labour market analyst, told The Globe and Mail, “Although some may think of retail trade workers as primarily casual employees or youths, we have to remember it is the largest industry in Canada at the moment, employing over two million people – mostly men and women between the ages of 25 and 54.”

Target’s move to leave the Canadian retail scene has resulted in a loss of 17,600 jobs in addition to other companies that worked with Target and had to lay off their own staff as well.

Employment has grown by only 2,600 jobs on average per month in the past half-year while year-over-year employment growth has stayed below 1 per cent for the past year. CJ