There are two economic plan/job plan ad campaigns plying their government’s wares these days: the BC Liberals pre-election campaign and the Harper conservative’s mid term blahs campaign.
Both claim that, with their respective government’s guidance, everything is great. Both are frauds.
The latest Stats Can Labour Market report is out. It shows little that’s good on either the national or provincial front.
Nationally, job growth has been stagnant for the last 4-5 months.
Provincially job growth isn’t just stagnant, it’s non-existent. For eight months BC has been losing jobs. And before that job growth was just weak.
In light of the $17 million the BC Liberals spent on the pre-election jobs plan blitz, the NDP called the government plan a failure, while the Liberals mounted a weak defense of ‘well, it could have been worse.’
And of course some pundits bit. For example, the TC’s Les Leyne felt this debate wasn’t worth sorting out, concluding “If you’re a Liberal, you’d call it stable and consistent. If you’re a New Democrat, it’s a stagnant failure.”
Except it’s not a case of he said/she said. There is an objective truth here. For about eight months BC’s job creation record has been exactly what the NDP calls it, “a stagnant failure”.
By any fair measure, BC has the third worst job creation records in the country over the last year. Only Ontario and Nova Scotia have created fewer jobs per capita.
On an absolute basis BC has created only 2000 jobs in the last year. That works out to a .1% increase in employment.
But even that depressing number hides a more serious trend. Since September BC has lost 26,000 jobs. Faster than most provinces, BC is going downhill.
The reality is that the BC Liberals’ job plan will not and cannot do anything about this. With a private sector economy that relies on resources and real estate the trend can be expected to continue into the next year or until major trading partners move away from policies that reduce demand.
But that’s a whole other story.