Canadian Labour Market Dynamics During COVID-19
The Canadian labor market experienced a period of unprecedented turmoil following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. We analyze the main changes using standard labor force statistics and new data on job postings. Envisaging a phase of temporary severing of employment relationships followed by a phase of more standard labor market search and matching, we use stock and flow data to understand key developments. We find dramatic changes in employment, unemployment and labor market attachment in 2020 and, looking forward to 2021, signs of an unusual recovery with co-existing strong labor demand and stubborn persistence in depressed employment rates.
We thank Ronit Mukherji for outstanding research assistance and the UBC Centre for Innovative Data in Economics Research (CIDER) for financial support. We also thank FRDC Analysts Adam Howe, Bin Hu, and Christos Koritsaris for disclosures. Fabian Lange acknowledges that this research was undertaken, in part, thanks to funding from the Canada Research Chairs Program. The views in this paper are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Bureau of Economic Research. All errors are our own.