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Thomas StorringDirector – Economics and Statistics
Tel: 902-424-2410Email:

December 15, 2022

In October, there were 24,220 Nova Scotians in receipt of regular employment insurance benefits (seasonally adjusted). Nova Scotia's seasonally adjusted regular employment insurance usage declined by 720 (-2.9%) from September to October 2022.

There were 437,620 Canadians that received regular employment insurance benefits in October (seasonally adjusted), a decrease of 14,510 (-3.2%) from September.

All provinces reported a decline in regular beneficiaries in October. The largest decline in percentage terms was reported in New Brunswick (-9.1%).

Comparing the first ten months of 2022 with the same period in 2021, Nova Scotia's employment insurance usage was down by 50.4%. National employment insurance usage was down by 64.5% with declines in all provinces. The largest decline in employment insurance usage was reported in Ontario and the smallest in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The number of employment insurance beneficiaries amounted to 4.7% of the labour force in Nova Scotia in October 2022. Nationally, the share of beneficiaries was 2.1% of the labour force. 

Use of employment insurance (as a share of the labour force) declined compared to pre-pandemic levels for all age cohorts of women as well as for men.   

Across all age cohorts, there are fewer women than men of comparable ages using employment insurance.

Employment insurance use in Nova Scotia remains the highest among those in trades and transport/equipment operators, sales and service occupations and those working in natural resources and agriculture occupations. 

Use of employment insurance was down for all counties comparing unadjusted regular beneficiaries for October 2022 with those reported in October 2021.

In percentage terms, the largest decline in employment insurance use from October 2021 to October 2022 was reported in Halifax (-63.7%). Guysborough reported the smallest decline (-13.2%).

Notes: From March to September 2020, Statistics Canada suspended publication of employment insurance statistics.  Canadians were eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) during this period.  Data for the period from March to September 2020 shows how an initial rise in employment insurance claims at the start of the pandemic was reversed as new employment insurance applicants were directed to CERB instead.  After September 27, 2020 there was a temporary expansion of employment insurance and CERB recipients were transitioned back to employment insurance. Temporary changes, including a reduction in the number of insurable hours required for eligibility, ended in September 2021. 

Source: Statistics Canada.  Table  14-10-0011-01   Employment insurance beneficiaries (regular benefits) by province and territory, monthly, seasonally adjustedTable  14-10-0323-01   Employment insurance beneficiaries by census division, monthly, unadjusted for seasonalityTable 14-10-0337-01  Employment insurance beneficiaries (regular benefits) by province, territory and occupation, monthly, seasonally adjustedTable 14-10-0287-01  Labour force characteristics, monthly, seasonally adjusted and trend-cycle, last 5 months

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