Meanwhile, Canada has strong employment numbers (+69K) but increasing unemployment from 7.6% to 7.8%


While the US had weak employment numbers and lowering unemployment rate, Canada had the opposite.  Employment rose by 69K, which for Canada is a big deal.  It would be the equivalent of the US adding 616K jobs given that the US is roughly 9 times the population of Canada.  And the unemployment rate rose from 7.6% to 7.8%. 

That goes to show how bogus and completely irrelevant focusing on unemployment rate by itself can be.  US rate is falling on weak employment data.  Canada rate is increasing with strong numbers.  The size of the labor force is to blame because people go in and out of the labor force.  When times are bad, people stop looking and the labor force shrinks. 

Canada numbers come in very strong while the rate increases.  Via Statcan:
Employment rose for the second consecutive month in January, with a gain of 69,000. At the same time, the unemployment rate increased by 0.2 percentage points to 7.8%, as more people searched for work. Compared with January 2010, employment was up 1.9% (+327,000).

Source: CanStat

Source: CanStat

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