B.C.’s unemployment rate up, some areas hit worse

Prince George has seen a particularly big spike in unemployment

Plus, the Okanagan flourishes while Telus takes a hit

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Well, it could be worse
B.C.’s unemployment rate ticked upward in July according to Statistics Canada’s latest Labour Force Survey released Friday. Now at 6 per cent, unemployment in B.C. is lower than in Canada overall (6.8 per cent) but higher than it was in June, 5.8 per cent. But some parts of the province have been hit worse than others. The unemployment rate in Prince George, for example, is up to 7.8 per cent from 6.3 per cent last summer. And according to a recent report from oil and gas safety association Enform, some 20,000 B.C. jobs could be affected by falling oil and gas prices. Overall, however, Canada’s unemployment rate has generally improved post-recession, as this StatsCan chart shows:

Can’t stop Kelowna
Good times in Kelowna, apparently. The city that we recently featured prominently in our magazine’s pages for having reinvented itself is experiencing its second best July on record for home sales (last July was its best). And then there’s wine: thanks to an early start this long summer, crops this year have been particularly abundant in the Okanagan (as well as other wine regions). Though, as one grower told CBC, they won’t know how well the wine turns out until after fermentation in December.

The bottom line
Profit was down 10 per cent in Telus’s second quarter, according to earnings released Friday. The reason? Largely, restructuring costs incurred by Telus closing its Black’s Photography stores in June. Operating revenue was up 5.1 per cent.