Regional unemployment increases slightly in August

Despite increase, region’s unemployment rate remains lowest in province

PERTH COUNTY – The region’s unemployment rate remains the lowest in Ontario.

The Four County Labour Market Planning Board released its August unemployment statistics last week, showing the region’s unemployment rate increased 0.3 percentage points to 3.9 per cent.

Ontario’s unemployment rate dropped to 8.6 per cent, a decrease of 0.3 percentage points.

The Planning Board reports that the labour force decreased by 1,500 and unemployment increased by 400 between July and August, which could be a reason for the increased unemployment rate.

Overall, net employment across the region decreased by 1,800. Part-time gains of 900 were offset by full-time job losses of 2,700. The Planning Board says this is the largest employment loss of 2021 so far, and could be caused by the seasonality of summer jobs.

The number of goods-producing sector workers decreased by net 1,700. The main driving force came from negative losses in manufacturing (1,700).

Employment in the services-producing sector also decreased by net 100. The greatest losses were in business, building and other support services (600) and education services (1,700). Large gains were seen in other services (except public administration), totalling 1,700.

“Many of the job losses could be attributed to students returning to school,” said Gemma Mendez-Smith, executive director of the Four County Labour Market Planning Board.

“A decrease in the labour pool will certainly affect the already stressed labour supply for employers and efforts to grow the workforce remains a key priority for our region.”

The Planning Board’s job postings website,, currently has 2,300 jobs listed.