Best City In Canada For Work? - 'Rust Belt' Town Oshawa

Just a few years ago, Ontario’s manufacturing heartland was doing so badly The Economist declared it the “new rust belt.”

Today, with the loonie flying low thanks to low oil prices, the “new rust belt” is looking decidedly less rusty. Auto exports are way up, and so are the prospects of the factory towns that line southern Ontario.

So much so, in fact, that Oshawa — the Canadian home of General Motors — is now the best city in Canada to find work, according to the latest edition of BMO’s labour market report card.

It unseated another southern Ontario city for that crown — Guelph, which has now slipped to second place.

Oshawa’s rise from laggard to leader has been meteoric, up 27 spots in a single year on a ranking with 33 spots. The city's total number of jobs has grown by nerly 7 per cent in a single year.

oshawa ontario auto plant
An aerial view of a General Motors facility in Oshawa, Ont. (Getty Images)

And it isn’t alone. “Cities surrounding the GTA now litter the top quartile” of the ranking, BMO economist Robert Kavcic wrote, including Kingston and the Kitchener-Waterloo region.

Case in point: The auto town of Widnsor, across the river from Detroit. Its jobless rate has plunged to 6.4 per cent from 11.4 per cent in a single year, according to BMO's data.

B.C. the provincial winner — by far

But looking at things from a provincial perspective, it’s British Columbia, rather than Ontario, that’s the winner.

B.C. “is the standout, with employment jumping 4.9 per cent in the past year — for the record, the next closest is Ontario way back at 1.4 per cent,” Kavcic wrote.

“The jobless rate plunged [0.7 percentage points] in April alone, pulling it down to 5.8 per cent, leaving B.C. with the lowest unemployment rate in the country for the first time on record dating back to 1975.”

Kavcic noted BMO expects B.C.’s economy to grow 3.3 per cent this year, more than double the rate in the rest of the country.

And while the Prairies are suffering from an oil price collapse (now compounded by the fire in Fort McMurray), there are still Prairie cities that are holding their own for jobs — Edmonton and Regina, in particular.

Here are the 10 best cities in Canada to find work, according to BMO.

1. Oshawa, Ont.

oshawa panoramaAnnual population growth: 1.7%
Annual employment growth: 6.9%
Unemployment rate: 6% (down 1.6 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 65.1%
 

2. Guelph, Ont.

guelph panoramaAnnual population growth: 1.2%
Annual employment growth: 5.1%
Unemployment rate: 4.8% (up 0.7 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 73%
 

3. Vancouver, B.C.

vancouver panoramaAnnual population growth: 1.8%
Annual employment growth: 6%
Unemployment rate: 6% (down 0.1 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 62.5%
 

4. Edmonton, Alta.

edmonton panoramaAnnual population growth: 2.1%
Annual employment growth: 4.1%
Unemployment rate: 7% (up 1.1 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 70.2%
 

5. Kitchener, Ont.

kitchener ontarioAnnual population growth: 1%
Annual employment growth: 2.5%
Unemployment rate: 5.6% (down 0.3 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 67.7%
 

6. Peterborough, Ont.

peterborough ontarioAnnual population growth: 0.4%
Annual employment growth: -1.3%
Unemployment rate: 3.2% (down 4.6 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 57.6%
 

7. Regina, Sask.

regina panoramaAnnual population growth: 1.8%
Annual employment growth: 0.1%
Unemployment rate: 5.4% (up 0.8 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 68.7%
 

8. Windsor, Ont.

windsor ontarioAnnual population growth: 0.8%
Annual employment growth: 1.1%
Unemployment rate: 6.4% (down 5 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 57.5%
 

9. Kingston, Ont.

kingston ontario panoramaAnnual population growth: 0.8%
Annual employment growth: 3%
Unemployment rate: 6.3% (down 0.3 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 59.8%
 

10. Winnipeg, Man.

winnipeg panoramaAnnual population growth: 1.4%
Annual employment growth: 0.6%
Unemployment rate: 6.3% (up 0.2 percentage points in a year)
Share of population with a job: 64.6%

 

Written by: Daniel Tencer

Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2016/05/10/best-city-jobs-canada_n_9871674.html

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