Labour Market Outlook
2021 Labour Market Forecast
Growth in the working-age population (15 years and over) is forecasted to be 1.5% in 2022, which would be the highest percentage increase in Nova Scotia since 1984. The labour force is forecasted to increase by 4,400 (+0.9%), and employment is forecasted to grow by 8,800 jobs (+1.9%). The unemployment rate is forecasted to drop by 0.9 percentage points to 7.5%. The participation rate is forecasted to slip slightly in 2021, down 0.4 percentage points from the 2020 level to 61.2%.
Long-Term Labour Market Forecast
Nova Scotia’s total population grew by over 49,000 since 2016, reaching an estimated all-time high of 992,055 on July 1st of 2021.
- Rising international and interprovincial migration has increased the population offsetting natural population change.
- Nova Scotia’s labour force and employment are expected to continue to grow.
- Employment growth, notably in full-time jobs, had been growing since 2016 until interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The overall level of employment has rebounded and has been above pre-pandemic levels since November of 2021.
- The unemployment rate touched record lows in Nova Scotia in 2019 and fell below 7.5%.
- Unemployment rose to nearly ten percent in 2020, before falling to 8.4% in 2021 as employment recovered.