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Kootenay unemployment rate drops below 3%

The Kootenay unemployment rate stood at 2.9 per cent in December, lower than both the provincial and national rates.

Statistics Canada says 77,300 people were working and 2,300 were looking for work out of a total population of 141,200.

That’s compared to 74,000 people with jobs and 4,700 searching in December 2021 out of a population of 139,800, for a rate of six per cent.

The B.C. rate last month was 3.9 per cent (down from 5.2 per cent the previous year) and nationally it was 4.5 per cent (down from 5.7 per cent last year).

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Stats Can says employment rose by 104,000 jobs in December, lead by an increase among youth aged 15 to 24. The number of employees increased in the private sector, while it held steady in the public sector.

There were employment gains across several industries, including construction, as well as transportation and warehousing.

Employment increased in B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Saskatchewan, while there was little change in the other provinces.

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