A slight improvement in the local employment situation last month as well as on the national scale.

Statistics Canada releasing the jobs numbers for July as businesses and workplaces across the country continue to re-open amid the COVID-19 pandemic and build on the resumption of economic activities. The agency says the Lethbridge-Medicine Hat jobless rate dropped to 9.5 per cent from 9.8 per cent in June. This region still has, by far, the lowest jobless rate in the province.

In Alberta, the unemployment rate for the province fell by 2.7 percentage points in July to 12.8 per cent, the first decline since the COVID-19 economic shutdown. The Edmonton region has the highest unemployment at 15.5 per cent.

When it comes to the country as a whole, the unemployment rate was 10.9 per cent  in July, falling 1.4 percentage points for the second consecutive month and down from a record high of 13.7 percent in May. The unemployment rate was 5.6% in February.  The number of unemployed people fell for the second consecutive month in July, down 269,000 (-11.0%). Despite this decrease, almost 2.2 million Canadians were unemployed in July, nearly twice as many (+92.6%) as in February (1.1 million).

The data released Friday morning (August 7) shows most of the employment gains in July were in part-time work.

Alberta Jobless Rate by Region July 2020

Lethbridge-Medicine Hat: 9.5%
Camrose-Drumheller: 13.1%
Calgary: 14.9%
Banff-Jasper-Rocky Mountain House and Athabasca-Grande Prairie-Peace River: 14.4%
Red Deer: 14%
Edmonton: 15.5%
Wood Buffalo-Cold Lake: 12%