April 28, 2009

Canadian unemployed claims up in February

The number of jobless Canadians receiving employment Insurance benefits rose by 44,300 in February, Statistics Canada reported Tuesday.

The 7.8 percent increase from January brought the total number of recipients to 610,200, the agency said.

In Alberta, the number of regular beneficiaries jumped by 27.3 percent in one month to 30,600 in February, bringing the total increase since October 2008 to 67.9 percent. StatsCan said. The number of beneficiaries in British Columbia reached 63,700 after an 11.6 percent increase in February. The total increase since October 2008 was 39.8 percent.

Ontario, home to Canada's automotive industry, experienced a 7.8 percent increase in beneficiaries in February. The province now has 198,900 receiving payments. Since October 2008, the number of beneficiaries has risen by 28.6 percent, the report said.

All metropolitan areas in Canada have seen an increase in the number of regular beneficiaries in the past year, the figures show.