Our neighbor to the North also suffered from an unexpectedly weak jobs report today, the worst monthly job losses in more than four years.
Canada shed 54,500 positions in March, more than wiping out the 50,700 jobs that were added in February, Statistics Canada said on Friday. Market operators had expected a modest gain of 8,500 jobs.
It was the biggest monthly jobs loss since February 2009, when the economy shed 69,300 positions. The March unemployment rate rose to 7.2 percent from 7.0 percent.
"The employment numbers did seem to be defying gravity up until March and were not lining up with the underlying growth numbers," said Doug Porter, chief economist at BMO Capital Markets. "We knew one of them had to give way and it looks as if employment has given way."
Adding to the gloom were trade figures for February that showed Canada's deficit increased to C$1.02 billion on both lower exports and higher imports. Traders had expected a surplus of C$200 million.<
Canadian Dollar Tumbles
Bloomberg reports Canadian Dollar Tumbles After Unexpected March Employment Loss
The Canadian dollar fell in its biggest decline in nine months against its U.S. peer after the nation unexpectedly lost jobs last month by the most since the last recession four years ago.
The loonie, as the Canadian dollar is known for the image of the C$1 coin, fell 0.6 percent to C$1.0183 at 2:09 p.m. in Toronto. Earlier, it fell 1.1 percent to C$1.0236 per U.S. dollar, the largest drop since June 28. One loonie buys 98.20 U.S. cents.
I think we have seen the end of good jobs reports here and in Canada for quite some time.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock
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