The economy gained 44,000 net new jobs in October but the gains were entirely in part-time employment, Statistics Canada said Friday.
The overall increase was driven by 67,000 additional part-time jobs for the month, while the number of full-time jobs fell by 23,000.
The unemployment rate held steady at 7.0 per cent as more people entered the labour market.
Economists had expected a loss of 10,000 jobs overall and the unemployment rate to remain unchanged, according to Thomson Reuters.
The increase in October follows a gain of some 67,000 jobs in September that saw gains in both part-time and full-time work.
Compared with a year ago, there were 140,000 more jobs in October including a gain of nearly 16,000 full-time jobs and 124,000 part-time positions.
For October, the goods-producing sector gained nearly 21,000 jobs, boosted by a gain of 24,000 in the contstruction industry. The natural resources sector also gained 10,000 jobs, its first notable increase since March 2015.
The services-producing sector added more than 23,000 jobs as wholesale and retail trade jobs climbed 19,000 and the “other services category” increased by 18,000. The educational services group climbed by 16,000.
Ontario gained 25,000 jobs in October, while British Columbia increased 15,000. The number of jobs in Newfoundland and Labrador fell by 5,600.
Statistics Canada also reported that Canada’s trade deficit hit a record $4.1 billion in September due to the import of a component for the Hebron offshore oil project in Newfoundland and Labrador. Economists had expected a deficit of $1.7 billion for September.
Imports rose 4.7 per cent to a record $47.6 billion in the month as import prices gained 2.4 per cent and volumes increased 2.3 per cent.
Exports climbed 0.1 per cent to $43.5 billion as a 0.9 per cent increase in prices was offset by a 0.8 per cent decrease in volumes.