Canada's Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (SEPH) which polls establishments and lags the more closely watched Labour Force Survey by roughly two months, showed that Canada gained just 3,100 jobs in November. That came after large job losses in the prior two months, taking the net jobs tally over the September- November period to -48,000. That contrasts sharply with the 89,000 increase in paid jobs in the LFS over the same three-month period. Clearly, the SEPH seems to be more in tune than the LFS with the stagnant economy — GDP growth likely averaged below 1% annualized in the second half of 2012. As today’s Hot Chart shows, over the July to November period, only 31,000 jobs were created according to the SEPH, which is about a quarter of the tally reported by the LFS over the same period for the paid component. The SEPH paints a less rosy picture than the LFS particularly in sectors like manufacturing and education, which both showed atypically strong employment in the LFS last year compared to the historic average. All told, the data this morning reinforce our view that Canadian employment wasn't as strong in the second half of 2012 as the LFS suggested. So we expect the LFS to reverse course and start producing negative numbers sooner rather than later — we’re calling for an employment drop of 30K in January's LFS to be released on February 8th.
Labour market likely not as strong as LFS suggests