Canada's Part-Time Conundrum
Last year marked the seventh straight year of solid employment gains in Canada following the recession. But, scratching beneath the surface shows the credit went solely to part-time positions. Steep losses in energy-producing provinces are only partially to blame for the decline in full-time positions. Outside of these provinces, part-time job growth vastly outpaced full-time positions. One of the few industries to buck the trend was finance and insurance. But, even here caution is warranted. A concentration in British Columbia and Ontario captures the feedback loop from strong housing markets that are set to cool and weigh on full-time job demand going forward. The Canadian economy is not out of the woods and will require ongoing support from both fiscal and monetary authorities. We expect a slower pace of job growth over the course of 2017. Although it will not take much for full-time work to make something of a comeback given the low bar set last year, the share of part-timers will remain elevated, implying continued downward pressure on earnings and hours worked.