In November 2017, Prince George’s unemployment rate was 5.3 per cent, a decrease of 1.2 per cent when compared to the same month in 2016 when it was 6.5 per cent, according to the city’s latest economic update. The unemployment rate was slightly higher than the provincial rate of 4.8 per cent but lower than the national rate of 5.9 per cent.
Prince George’s employment rate in November 2017 was 68.7 per cent, an increase from the same month last year when it was 65.4 per cent, a 3.3 per cent positive change. The employment rate of 68.7 per cent for Prince George was higher than Canada’s national rate of 61.8 per cent and British Columbia’s rate of 62.2 per cent.
Total employment in the Cariboo Economic Development region was 82,000 during November 2017. This represents a decrease of 1,100 jobs when compared to the previous month. The Wholesale and Retail Trade sector saw the highest increase, adding 500 jobs. Job numbers decreased by 700 jobs in Wood Products Manufacturing and by 600 jobs in Building and other Support Services.
There were nine (nine single family dwellings, no multiples) total housing starts in Prince George during November 2017, compared to 14 (13 SFDs, one multiples) in November 2016. There were 82 (74 SFDs, eight multiples) completions in November 2017, while November 2016 had 28 (10 SFDs, 18 multiples). According to CMHC, the high number of completions for November 2017 were for properties that were absorbed/completed in prior months and had to be accounted for. Additional observations were incorporated into November data because they do not have the flexibility to restate historical data. Housing Construction
Across BC, housing starts increased by 4.4 per cent, from 3,658 (922 SFDs, 2,736 multiples) in November 2016 to 3,818 (1,163 SFDs, 2,655 multiples) in November 2017. The total number of completions in BC increased by 61.9 per cent, from 2,231 (894 SFDs) in November 2016 to 3,611 (1,404 SFDs) in November 2017.
The City of Prince George issued 34 building permits valued at $8.1 million in November 2017, including $6.85 million in residential permits and $1.17 million in commercial permits. Industrial permits came in at $74,000 and institutional permits were zero.This is a 49.9 per cent increase over November 2016 when 37 permits were issued at a value of $5.4 million.
The City of Prince George issued 454 permits from January 2017 to November 2017. The total value of building permits year to date in 2017 is $115.63 million.