City releases August economic update

The city has released its month economic update:

In August 2017, Prince George’s unemployment rate was 5.9 per cent, a decrease of 0.7 per cent when compared to the same month in 2016 when it was 6.6 per cent. The unemployment rate was higher than the provincial rate of 5.1 per cent but lower than the national rate of 6.2 per cent.

Prince George’s employment rate in August 2017 was 68.0 per cent, an increase from the same month last year when it was 66.5 per cent. The employment rate was higher than the national rate of 61.6 per cent and B.C.’s 62.2 per cent.

Total employment in the Cariboo Economic Development region was 82,800 for August 2017. This represented a net increase of 400 jobs when compared to the previous month. Wood Product Manufacturing saw the highest increase, with the addition of 900 jobs. The highest decrease in jobs occurred in Accommodation and Food Services, with a decrease of 300 jobs.

Real Estate

Two newly constructed single detached houses were sold in Prince George in August 2017.  CMHC has suppressed the average sale price due to insufficient data and privacy concerns. This is in comparison to five newly constructed single detached houses sold in August 2016 at an average price of $472,981.  Overall, there were 13 new units (Single, Semi-Detached, Row, Apartment) sold in August 2017 while nine were sold in August 2016.

Home sales in northern B.C. totalled 338 units in August 2017, a decline of 12.6 per cent from August 2016. The average price of homes sold in northern B.C. was $288,175 in August 2017, an increase of 8.8 per cent from August 2016. The dollar value of home sales totalled $122.6 million down 45.8 per cent from the same month last year.
Housing construction
There were 27 (19 SFDs, eight multiples) total housing starts in Prince George during August 2017, compared to 16 (14 SFDs, two multiple) in August 2016. There were no completions in August 2017, while August 2016 had 18.
Across B.C., housing starts increased by 4.1 per cent, from 2,946 (928 SFDs) in August 2016 to 3,066 (898 SFDs) in August 2017. The total number of completions in B.C. increased by 7.1 per cent, from 2,084 (769 SFDs) in August 2016 to 2,233 (876 SFDs) in August 2017.
Building permits
The City of Prince George issued 44 building permits valued at $12.07 million in August 2017, including $11.6 million in residential permits and $.47 million in commercial permits; there were no industrial or institutional permits.
This is a 109 per cent increase over August 2016 when 58 permits were issued at a value of $5.77 million.
Business licences
The City of Prince George received 42 new business license applications and one renewal application in August 2017.