Analysis: black Friday for the employment in Canada

Analyse: vendredi noir pour l’emploi au Canada

Photo: Mark Lennihan Associated Press
Such areas as the restoration, will continue to be sealed by the new health standards and the caution of consumers.

By the time you read these lines, perhaps you have already learned the extent of the damage suffered on the job front in Canada last month, then that was felt all the force of the impact of the pandemic coronavirus ?

Unless it’s a surprise, just as large as the improbable, the losses will prove to be as terrible as we once believed, not seen since the Second world War.

You will be spoiled for choice for the number in the most chilling of all, between the four, perhaps five million jobs erased in a single month, the unemployment rate, which could flirt with the rate of amazing of 20 % and the proportion of Canadians who still had the privilege to hold a job, which could be less than one in two.

We will not fail to make comparisons with recessions of the past, and talk about new records. Only, this economic crisis is not like the other, repeated in a speech last week, the governor of the Bank of Canada, Stephen Poloz, because of the deliberate decision of governments to put their economies on pause to slow the progression of the COVID-19.

“The current situation is much more similar to a natural disaster to an economic recession, classic,” he explained, and ” in the wake of natural disasters, economic recovery is usually pretty fast and solid “.

Also, several observers agree to say that these terrible statistics in the month of April will mark the trough of the crisis, after which we’ll see the employment situation, and the economy in general gradually improve. The provincial governments have they not already begun the déconfinement ?

A disaster like no other

Only, the current pandemic is not any kind of natural disaster.

Unlike an earthquake or a tsunami, that will end as quickly as they arrived, the pandemic will continue to do its thing be likely until a vaccine is found, perhaps in 12 to 18 months.

The emergence, or, more likely, the relaxation of the rules of containment and social distancing should facilitate the life of many businesses and workers, but this does not reduce to a normal life.

As for the economic sectors most exposed, such as tourism, accommodation, catering and the retail trade, their activities will continue to be cruelly sealed by the new health standards and the caution of consumers.

How much longer can they hold out before having to permanently close their doors and turn their employees, which are now considered as simple technical unemployment, in unemployed people common ?

A survey of the firm’s Research Modus, with a thousand of canadian companies of all sizes, revealed on Wednesday that, under the rules in force last week, and in spite of the emergency financial assistance from governments, 5 % of them had already abandoned the party and that this proportion will rise to 21 % by three months and to 46 % by six months.

In fact, does anyone know what job losses in the month of April will soon be little more than a bad memory and resulting in the destruction of more sustainable production capacity.

In the most optimistic of its economic forecasts, the international monetary Fund predicted in Canada, a month ago, average unemployment rates of 7.5 % this year and 7.2 % next year. Nothing to do with the vertiginous rate that it will unveil this Friday, but, all the same, a marked increase and sustainable compared to the average of 5.7 % posted last year.

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