Feb. 05, 2021

EMPLOYMENT DATA: JANUARY 2021

Alberta

  • Alberta added 21,100, almost all part time jobs; 262,700 Albertans looking for work.
  • Unemployment rate drops to 10.7% from 11.1% in December.
  • Construction up 15,300 (7.2%), business building and support up 6,900 (10.4%), educational services added 8,800 (5.8%).
  • Year over year we had 79,600 fewer jobs, down 3.5%.

Canada

  • Job losses 212,800 (40,000 forecast) in January vs. December’s drop of 53,000.
  • Unemployment rate increases to 9.4% from 8.8%.
  • Almost all accounted for by a loss of 225,000 part time (private sector lost 211,000 and public sector 11,000).
  • We have 860,000 fewer jobs now than a year ago.

US

  • Added 49,000 jobs; the most recent estimates were an increase of 100,000.
  • The participation rate dropped to 61.4% and 406,000 workers left the workplace.
  • Unemployment rate decreased to 6.4%, it was expected to remain unchanged at 6.7%.
  • Unusually large revisions on their employment growth for the two previous months. December was reduced to 227,000 job losses versus the initial estimate of a loss of 140,000 and November gains were reduced to 264,000 versus 336,000.

VACCINES

  • President Biden guarantees that Americans will be inoculated first, before sharing its shots with others.
  • Michigan’s Pfizer plant was supposed to help supply vaccines to Canada, but the exclusivity deal doesn’t support this, neither does the deal with New Hampshire’s Moderna plant. No slowdown to US delivery from either company.
  • US invested $5.92 billion for development and purchase of 200 million doses from Moderna, with an option for 500 million total doses.
  • According to Bloomberg, US is on pace to vaccinate 75% of its population; Canada will need almost a decade to reach same level.
  • Vaccines for Canada are now sourced from Belgium and Switzerland.
  • Novavax plans to start producing vaccines in Canada by yearend; factory being built in Montreal.
  • Providence Therapeutics’ (Calgary company) $30 million grant application for rapid development of mRNA vaccine was denied by federal government in April 2020.

TIDBITS

  • Breast cancer has overtaken lung cancer as the most common form of the disease, accounting for nearly 12% of new cases each year worldwide.
  • In March, Google Pixel smartphone cameras can measure heart and breathing rates, one of the first applications of Alphabet’s AI technology to its wellness services.
  • 2020 was a record year for US wind power installations; adding equivalent capacity for 5 million homes, bringing total to almost 38 million homes.
  • South Korea ranks 1st on the Bloomberg Innovation Index, followed by Singapore and Switzerland. US now ranks 11th and China is 16th.
  • Regions of the U.K. powered by a combination of nuclear and wind are already hitting 2030 climate targets.
  • Air Canada needs government aid before they can refund cancelled flights. As of Sept. 30th, they had $2.3 billion in advance ticket sales, and are currently burning through $15 million per day.