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Statistics Canada to say how labour force fared in April

Last Updated May 7, 2021 at 2:14 am MDT

Shoppers collect items from a 'curb side pick up' at Toronto's Eaton Centre shopping mall on Saturday December 19, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada will say this morning how the labour market fared last month as governments imposed lockdowns and renewed restrictions aimed at slowing the rising spread of COVID-19.

In March, the economy outpaced expectations and added 303,000 jobs as restrictions rolled back.

The gain put the labour market 1.5 per cent below the pre-COVID level in February 2020.

The unemployment rate also fell to a pandemic-era low of 7.5 per cent in March.

But then COVID-19 variants spread through much of the country, case counts spiked and hospitals became overloaded.

With lockdowns in April, economists expect the jobs report today to show a drop in employment with restrictions forcing the closure of high-touch businesses like restaurants and bars.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 7, 2021.

The Canadian Press