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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: May 6, 2022

Niagara unemployment rate lowest on record, Algoma Central Arena named at Canada Games Park, COVID transmission decreasing, and more.

In this edition:

Niagara unemployment rate lowest on record
Algoma Central Arena named at Canada Games Park
COVID transmission decreasing

Niagara unemployment rate falls to lowest rate on record

The unemployment rate for the St. Catharines-Niagara CMA has fallen to 5.2%, a low not seen since the current data set began in March, 2006. The rate was seen at 5.3% in December, 2019. Provincial and national employment rates fell to 5.4%.

Nationally, increases in employment in professional, scientific and technical services and public administration were offset by declines in construction and retail trade.

Total hours worked fell 1.9% in April, driven in part by absences related to illness or disability.

Average hourly wages were up 3.3% (+$0.99 to $31.06) year over year, similar to the growth observed in March (+$1.03; +3.4%).

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Canada Games Park arena naming sponsorship announced as Algoma Central Arena

Niagara Region and friends are thrilled to announce Algoma Central Corporation as the newest naming sponsor for one of the two ice pads located inside the Walker Sports and Abilities Centre at the new Canada Games Park. Algoma Central Corporation is headquartered in St. Catharines and operates the largest fleet of dry and liquid bulk carriers operating on the Great Lakes – St. Lawrence Seaway.

The new 1,200-seat arena will now be known as the Algoma Central Arena. Algoma Central Arena has glass walls that allow for added light and viewing of the atrium. It is parasport compatible and will host sledge hockey games and tournaments. The ice pad has also been constructed below the surrounding floor level so that spectators in wheelchairs can easily watch the action without their view being obstructed by the boards.

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Canadian medical officer of health: COVID transmission decreasing

Today, PHAC, in collaboration with other federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments as well as academia across Canada, launched a new online COVID-19 wastewater surveillance dashboard to illustrate wastewater trends in select Canadian cities. This tool, which will be expanded to provide additional data on more cities, allows Canadians to access the latest wastewater data to inform decision-making, such as on the use of personal precautions.

While COVID-19 is still circulating across the country, recent 7-day averages (ranging 7-days ending from April 30-May 5, 2022 across P/Ts) and other disease activity indicators show decreasing transmission in many areas. Nationally, laboratory test positivity during the latest 7-day period (April 27-May 3, 2022) has decreased to 14%. Similarly, wastewater signals have plateaued or declined in many areas, however there is considerable variability from testing sites across the country.

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Reading Recommendations

Working women are not OK

Canadian Chamber of Commerce

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s Senior Director of Workforce Strategies and Inclusive Growth, Leah Nord, issued the following statement today on the state of Canada’s labour market.

“As Canada’s workforce rebounds to pre-pandemic levels, there’s a self-congratulatory consensus that since labour force numbers have recovered, Canadians have as well. As we head into Mother’s Day amid Mental Health Week, try asking working women, particularly working mothers, if they are feeling good and doing okay. They are very far from okay.

By the headline numbers, women are seemingly back to where they were in 2019. Under the numbers, however, are a lot of unknowns that need answers. How many mothers have weighed the personal and the economic before dropping out of the workforce on a long-term basis to care for children during the pandemic and hence no longer captured by the survey? How many women have left a career track to take on part-time work in order to care for children, parents or other family members? What are the longer-term physical and mental impacts on working mothers, and does this affect workforce participation and productivity rates going forward?”

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Canada’s jobless rate drops to a new low, ensuring more interest-rate hikes

Financial Post

Canada’s jobless rate dropped to 5.2 per cent, a modern low, all but guaranteeing another outsized increase in interest rates when policymakers at the Bank of Canada end their next round of deliberations on June 1.

Statistics Canada’s latest monthly survey of the labour market didn’t turn up stunning results like it has over the previous few months. Employment was little changed in April, as absences from illness and disability appeared to offset employers’ desire to hire to keep up with strong demand for goods and services. Hours worked declined 1.9 per cent from April, although the new level still was 1.3 per cent more than at the eve of the pandemic in February 2020.

Through the Daily Updates, the GNCC aims to deliver important business news in a timely manner. We disseminate all news and information we feel will be important to businesses. Inclusion in the Daily Update is not an endorsement by the GNCC.

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