Canada's unemployment rate dropped to 5.6 per cent in November, the lowest mark since Stats Canada collected comparable data in 1976. File photo.

Canada’s unemployment rate dropped to 5.6 per cent in November, the lowest mark since Stats Canada collected comparable data in 1976. File photo.

The labour force’s largest monthly increase in more than six years helped lower Canada’s unemployment rate to its lowest mark since Statistics Canada started measuring comparable data in 1976.

Stats Canada reported Friday the nation’s jobless rate in November was 5.6 per cent with the help of 94,100 new jobs, the most since March 2012.

The figure is down from 5.8 per cent measured in October.

Victoria’s unemployment rate also dropped by one basis point in November to 3.8 per cent, the lowest in B.C.

Kelowna saw a big drop in its jobless figures last month to 3.9 per cent, compared to five per cent in October.

Although Abbotsford and Vancouver also saw unemployment declines, B.C.’s jobless rate went up three-tenths to 4.4 per cent, still the lowest in Canada by a full per cent over Quebec.

On the downside Friday, Stats Canada said year-over-year average hourly wage growth for permanent employees showed its weakest reading since July 2017, continuing a decline to 1.46 per cent in November.

Wages are watched closely by the Bank of Canada on decisions related to its trend-setting interest rate.

The central bank left the rate unchanged Wednesday at 1.75 per cent, highlighted by other economic concerns including weaker business investment and sharp declines in oil prices.

Comparable date first became available to Stats Canada in 1976.

Under the old approach, the unemployment rate registered a 5.4 reading in 1974.

CHEK News