Quick facts

In May 2018:

  • there were 11.9 million people in Ontario aged 15 years or older
    • 7.6 million (64%) were either working or actively looking for work
    • 7.2 million (61%) were employed and 82% of them had a full time job
  • Ontario’s unemployment rate was 5.7% (436,900 unemployed people)

Employment little changed in May

Employment was little changed in Ontario in May (1,000) following an increase of 9,300 net jobs in April.

Chart 1 shows employment in Ontario from January 2013 to May 2018.

Chart 1. Data is available for download below.

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, Table 14-10-0019-01, (seasonally adjusted data).

Download data, chart 1

Full-time vs. part-time

There was a gain in full-time jobs in May (20,900). Part-time jobs declined by 19,900.

Employment increase/decrease by age

Youth employment (those aged 15 to 24) fell by 9,400 in May, after declining by 22,200 in April.

Employment for people aged 25 to 54 was unchanged in May, compared to April, and those aged 55 and older gained 10,000 jobs.

Employment in Canada was virtually unchanged in May (7,500 jobs), as was the case in April (1,100 jobs).

Unemployment rate increased to 5.7%

Chart 2 shows unemployment rates, Ontario and Canada, January 2013 to May 2018.

Chart 2. Data is available for download below.

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, Table 14-10-0019-01, (seasonally adjusted data).

Download data, chart 2

Ontario’s unemployment rate increased to 5.7% in May, from 5.6% in April.

Canada’s unemployment rate remained at 5.8% in May for the fourth consecutive month.

Ontario’s unemployment rate has remained below that of Canada’s for 36 consecutive months.

Unemployment rate by age

For people aged 15 to 24, the unemployment rate increased to 11.7% in May, from 11.6% in April.

For those aged 25 to 54, the unemployment rate increased to 4.9% in May, from 4.6% in April, and for those aged 55 and older, it fell to 4.3% from 4.5% in April.

Lowest and highest unemployment rates

Chart 3 shows Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) with highest and lowest unemployment rates in Canada, May 2018.

Chart 3. Data is available for download below.

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, Table 14-10-0294-01, (seasonally adjusted data to reduce volatility caused by small sample size).

Download data, chart 3

Brantford recorded the highest unemployment rate in Ontario (7.5%), while St. John’s, Newfoundland recorded the highest unemployment rate in Canada (8.7%).

Peterborough recorded the lowest unemployment rate in Canada in May (2.7%).

Year-over-year comparisons

Over the first five months of 2018, employment in Ontario increased by 87,800 net jobs for adults 25 years and older compared to a year earlier.

Employment increase and decrease by education level

Chart 4 shows Ontario employment change by highest level of education attained, aged 25 and older, May 2017 to May 2018, year-to-date.

Chart 4. Data is available for download below.

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, Table 14-10-0019-01, unadjusted data

Download data, chart 4

Adults with a university degree led gains, with 86,400 net new jobs.

Individuals with some postsecondary education (PSE) recorded job gains of 41,900, while employment for those with certificates or diplomas increased by 29,000.

People with high school education recorded job losses of 49,500 those with less than high school education recorded job losses of 23,000.

Unemployment rate by education level

The unemployment rate for adults aged 25 and older with PSE credentials was 4.1% over the first five months of 2018, down from 4.4% a year earlier.

The unemployment rate for adults without PSE credentials was 6.2%, down from 7.2% compared to the first five months of 2017.

Employment increase and decrease by occupation

Chart 5 shows Ontario employment change by occupation, May 2017 to May 2018, year-to-date.

Chart 5. Data is available for download below.

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, Table 14-10-0296-01, unadjusted data.

Download data, chart 5

Half of the 10 major occupational groups in Ontario had net employment gains over the first five months of 2018 compared to a year earlier.

Learn more about the National Occupation Classification (NOC) system.

These occupations gained the most jobs:

  • management (103,600)
  • business, finance and administration (72,800)
  • trades, transport and equipment operator and related (10,600)

These occupations lost the most jobs:

  • health (38,500)
  • sales and service (28,600)
  • art, culture, recreation and sport (16,100)

Long-term unemployment decreased

Chart 6 shows Ontario’s long-term unemployed (27 weeks or more) as a percentage of total unemployment, May 2010 to May 2018, year-to-date.

Chart 6. Data is available for download below.

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, Table 14-10-0056-01, unadjusted data.

Download data, chart 6

Over the first five months of 2018, an average of 72,400 people were long-term unemployed, or unemployed for 27 weeks or longer. This was down from 96,200 a year earlier.

Long-term unemployed individuals accounted for 16.6% of the total number of unemployed people over the first five months of 2018. This compared with 20.0% a year earlier.

The percentage of long-term unemployed individuals is still higher compared to the pre-recession level in May 2008, when 13.1% of all unemployed people were long-term unemployed.

Average time in long-term unemployment

The average time in unemployment decreased to 17.1 weeks over the first five months of 2018 from 20.1 weeks a year earlier.

Download data

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey

May 2018 Labour Market Report:

Open Government Licence Ontario

Updated: July 23, 2021
Published: June 13, 2018