Unemployment & construction jobs up

BC’s unemployment rate edged up a bit in March from 4.1 to 4.3% but the ‘participation rate’ rose to a 13 year high at the same time.  The ‘participation rate’ is the measure of working age people who either have jobs or are seeking them.

The amazing thing about these recent employment stats are how many jobs are in construction:

“The increase from the previous month came in construction and manufacturing, and in some services sectors, but there was a drop in financial and real-estate services,” Service Canada economist Rod Smelser said in an analysis.

Year-over-year, B.C. has created about 55,000 jobs. The province’s robust construction industry, which generated 28,000 jobs over this period, has been the main engine of that growth.

Employment in that sector stands at a record 219,000.

“There have been significant year-to-year employment declines in two areas — financial and real-estate services, down by 15,000 jobs, and manufacturing, down by 22,000 jobs,” Smelser said.

It’s curious that those building condos have plenty of work, while those funding and selling them are seeing job losses.  It would be interesting to see employment stats by sector during other boom/bust cycles to determine if there is any pattern that precedes a bust.  Certainly you have to wonder, can we have an economy primarily built on building?

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Krissh is a spambot. Why does anyobdy bother responding to a program?


Krrish2 – Yes, I'll have fries with that


HAHA Good one Krissh, so the business owners just have to sell their ten condos to the new wal mart employees before they go bankrupt!

You are a funny girl after all.


Employeement rates are to keep the scenerio of economy and real estate up not the rates of pay.

Don't worry about the local bussiness owners they had purchased 10 condo or houses each to gain their part.

Best part is that you guys are not making $8.23 did you buy anything?Then why real estate is up!

if you don't want to realize and wanted to make mockery out of anything than just forget it keep on learning,I am going to work…….bye bye

Tony Danza

OT but did anyone hear Rob Chipman on the CBC yesterday afternoon? Someone could use a stint with Toastmasters, he came off sounding like an amateur when discussing improprieties in RE sales.


Are you saying Wal Mart is unionized?

So when Wal Mart opens and pays it's employees $8/hr and causes all the family owned businesses on Fraser to close. How could you think this is good?

When Wal Mart expands more and you lose your job driving a pallet jack and have to go work at wal mart for $8/hr, how will you pay for your unit at TV Towers?

"Wall Mart is intended to keep union and the equivalent rates of pay"

Are you joking?

"In 2001, sales associates, the most common job in Wal-Mart, earned on average $8.23 an hour for annual wages of $13,861"


Tony Danza

I love krrish2's sarcasm, his posts used to confuse me but I now realize that he is really a bear poking fun at the bull's case. Good job krrish2 keep it up!



You got it incorrect- prices of real estate won't go up because of more jobs(that would be unemployment rates)and the price of real estate won't go down because of low rates of pay because those are extra from the third party at the rate of 1 they can hire 2 employees but most of top or previous employees are going to stay where ever they are.

Even Wall Mart is intended to keep union and the equivalent rates of pay for the necessary jobs to run their part of operation but the third party will provide jobs to any one because they won't cry to pay basic for hard work.

So jobs are different and no bubble is different do not combined them to over react.

Lager not Logger

I don't know if our market has peaked yet, but it makes sense that finance and real estate sales would see the downturn first. The lag between when a construction project is funded and started until when it is completed is a few years, so construction workers will still be at work while the market slides. Here's what happens to those buildings that are completed during a crash though (from today's MSNBC): The Village at Green River in Corona, Calif., began marketing 19 newly-built townhouses in July 2007, just as the national real estate market began flagging. The average price of the homes, which vary in size from 1,400 to 1,640 square feet, was $505,000 at the time. Three price drops later, the homes finally began selling in March — at an average price of $309,000, says listing agent Dominic… Read more »


So krissh, what you've just said is that Wal Mart will open more locations in Canada and the influx of $8/hr jobs will make prices quadruple? Why didn't Miami real estate go up then? Or california or any of the other cities which have tanked around the world? What about the small businesses that get wiped out by wal mart? Doesn't this mean that wages will go down? There is no way anyone could be as stupid as you pretend to be. How will inflation in China affect the local economy? How will the high Canadian Dollar help whomever it is you think is coming here? Do you even read the links which are posted on this site or do you just read the blog and then string a bunch of words together? I know you won't answer since you… Read more »


Job for every one for less than the top rates. Since Americas biggest retail giant wall mart annouces to expand their bussiness to Canada,Canada's biggest giants contracting out their manual labour jobs to third parties in result from all the unionized jobs the bottom is going out to third party that's mean third party can creat lots of jobs for every one but on basic rates of pay. Unemployement rates to fall to ZERO close to 2010 and beyond when all jobs in residential construction will transfer to non residential construction projects till 2020. A, First of all you should have drag the nyt link here but from your 15% hint- I can believe your comment tells me that market is up and coming. Your cash flow negative transfered your comment into farce,as mentioned earlier the following has been implimented… Read more »


Everyone should read "It's the Big One" link that was just posted … I lived in London for a while and I can"t tell you how many times I heard … "It's different here", "Center of the English world", "all the European head offices are located here with ex pat packages" … ie RE demand is a given …

Look out below


Vancouver R/E is like Eron.

Sure is. Eron Mortgage, that is.



That's ridiculously wishful thinking Anon 12:10 if you think that the few rich foreigners coming here makes even a drop in the bucket on a $350+ billion dollar market you're absolutely insane.

Yes, that's a conservative guesstimate for how much GVRD residential real estate would cost. It's more likely around $500 billion.


many immigrants here just spend money they earned elsewhere so I don't really think local stats can explain the whole picture.


14,000 by Friday anyone? 15,000 by month end? 🙂


Hey Satv, did you read the New York Times? Big healine special article about Rob Chipman blog.

They make consultation with economic round table, lots smart guys from Yale etc, they say agreed Vanouver different from other landscapes.

Much recommened all panel members to buy Condo in Pender and Commercial Drive area -very good future, not worry cash flow negative,(only first 35 years).

They also say next year price go high maybe 15% because laid off workers from Ontario come to work in construction and makes lots demand for rental.


Do you mean Enron?


Anybody heard of Eron????? They sold energy back and forth to each other and had inflated gains. Vancouver R/E is like Eron.

Another anonymous

House prices in Vancouver’s Commercial Drive area have tripled in the past decade, drawing yuppies to the now-million-dollar homes, yet some of the grittier problems in the city’s vibrant urban village remain.

I want to write this sentence as it will appear in 2011. How do I write "1/tripled" as in

"House prices in Vancouver's Commercial Drive area have 1/tripled in the past few years, driving yuppies from their once-million-dollar homes, while some of the gritter residents of the once-gentrified section of the city have taken over the abandoned marble-counter-topped homes."


"Vancouver Sun

Published: Monday, April 07, 2008

House prices in Vancouver's Commercial Drive area have tripled in the past decade, drawing yuppies to the now-million-dollar homes, yet some of the grittier problems in the city's vibrant urban village remain.

Homeless people sleep in alcoves. Crack dealers deal openly on street corners. On the periphery of the area, prostitutes still seek customers."

Hmm, does anyone see the same thing happening in the downtown eastside/ Woodwards?


Realtors are feeling the pain… sales are dropping off a cliff.


Here is the full report from Statscan. Page 37 are the BC specific numbers. It seems like the finance/RE/insurance number is an anomaly but I might be wrong. It's hard to say since these numbers are seasonally adjusted. On page 48 you can see the non-seasonally adjusted 3 month MA. I see some pain in parts of the interior but if there's massive carnage in the forestry sector it's very well hidden.

It's possible that with more unemployed around we could see the under construction projects coming to completion sooner. I don't know where the bottleneck is in the labour pool for these projects.


I can come up with only one plausible scenario for the Financial and Real Estate jobs losses. Assumming the market is still doing well which it seems to be I can't imageine realtors are hurting that much yet. So that makes it more likely that it is financial services. If so maybe finally we are running out of first time buyers so the mortgage business has taken a dive. Only people buying now are the rich that don't need a mortgaged. This will seize up pretty quickly if this is case.

OK I lied 2 plausible scenarios. Maybe the banks exposure to the US subprime meltdown is causing the job losses.