Jun 11, 2019

Canada's deceptively low unemployment rate

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Data: Statistics Canada; Chart: Axios Visuals

The Canadian economy added 27,700 jobs in May, bringing the year-over-year job gains to 453,100, and pushing the unemployment rate to 5.4%, the lowest level since 1976.

But, but, but: Canada's economy grew at an annualized pace of just 0.4% in the first quarter, following 0.3% growth in the fourth quarter of 2018, giving the country its weakest back-to-back quarters of growth since 2015.

  • Canada's household savings rate fell to 1.1% in the first quarter. That's 5.6% below the U.S. savings rate, the widest the disparity has been since the 1970s.
  • Canada's ratio of debt to income reached 176% in the fourth quarter, among the highest in the developed world, and 24 percentage points higher than the U.S. rate.

On the bright side: The Bank of Canada forecasts a rebound in the second half of the year with Canada’s GDP expected to grow by 1.2% this year, wages are rising and consumers are growing less pessimistic about the economy.

Go deeper: 2018's escalating exodus of U.S. tech workers to Canada

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 1,475,976 — Total deaths: 86,979 — Total recoveries: 317,372Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 404,352 — Total deaths: 13,829 — Total recoveries: 22,775Map.
  3. States latest: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order allowing New Yorkers to vote by absentee ballot for June 23 primaries.
  4. Federal government latest: The U.S. has begun to see "glimmers of hope" despite its highest recorded number of deaths in 24 hours, Dr. Anthony Fauci said.
  5. World updates: WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged countries should put politics aside "if you don’t want to have many more body bags.”
  6. 🎧 Podcast: The battle over billionaire coronavirus saviors
  7. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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The coronavirus pandemic threatens low-wage jobs

As many as one-third of U.S. jobs are at risk of disappearing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, and it will disproportionately displace low-income workers that do not have the financial cushion to absorb the economic blow.

Why it matters: The dire economic ramifications of the national shut-down stand to devastate those that can least afford it. Nearly 10 million Americans have filed for unemployment claims in recent weeks.

Coronavirus prompting historic drop in air travel and jet fuel demand

Air travel — and the jet fuel powering it — are plummeting alongside most other parts of our modern economy as vast swaths of the world shut down to fight the coronavirus.

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