B.C. adds nearly 27,000 jobs in February, small businesses still struggling

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – B.C.’s economic bounceback from the worst days of the virus has seen a significant boost, with the addition of nearly 27,000 jobs in February.

Most of those were part-time positions, especially in stores.

Greg Wilson with the Retail Council of Canada says while larger outlets are in a position to hire, many smaller operations are still struggling.

“Particularly for fashion — apparel, accessories, shoes — these businesses’ sales are still down at least 50 per cent from pre-pandemic levels. They’re not yet seeing a pick-up in traffic,” Wilson said.

“For a small independent restaurant or retailer who is on a main street and struggling and trying to figure out if they can make it … the next few months are going to be really difficult and critical,” he added.

Related article: Unemployment rate falls in February to lowest since March 2020

The unemployment rate in B.C. sits at just under seven per cent.

Nationally, our country added 260,000 jobs in February, almost four times what experts predicted.

Statistics Canada also says unemployment fell to 8.2 per cent.

That’s the lowest rate since March of last year. The gains in February almost wiped out the loss of 266,000 jobs over the previous two months.

-With files from Hana Mae Nassar and the Canadian Press

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