TORONTO - As Canada celebrates its 150th birthday, Express Employment Professionals takes a historical look at Canada's labor force and compares the employment landscape in 1867 to today.
"From hewers of wood and drawers of water to Canada in 2017, the country has come a long way," said Bob Funk, CEO and chairman of the board of Express Employment Professionals. "Today, Canada is a diversified service-based labor force that hardly resembles its agriculture and natural resources start in 1867. The Canada labor market is growing, forward-looking and optimistic. There is much to celebrate on Canada's 150th."
In 1867, where you lived largely dictated your profession. Canadians living in the West worked in agriculture, while Canadians on the east coast worked in fisheries. Central Canadians worked in the lumber industry, with some working in manufacturing in the cities and a few in the new mining sector.
In 2017, Canadians are on the move. Employment in goods production continues to decrease while the services sector continues to grow across the country.
Here is how we compare then and now (click to enlarge).
 Source: Almanac of British North America for 1867. According to the Almanac of British North America for 1867, the "Lumber Trade of Canada is of the highest importance to the country."
Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, May 2017. Trades based on the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).
Results from two new polls of the unemployed in Canada and the United States released in May show that while both Canadians and Americans remain overwhelmingly hopeful, majorities in both countries believe their country is headed in the wrong direction.  Majorities of the unemployed in both countries have not had a job interview in the last month, at the time of interviewing and the length of unemployment remains stubbornly long.
The unique national surveys of more than 1,700 jobless Canadians and 1,500 jobless Americans age 18 and older were conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of Express between March 14 and April 6, 2017.

Mixed Outlook on Trudeau & Trump Administrations 

The unemployed in Canada have a more neutral position on the ability of the federal government to create jobs. When asked, "Thinking about Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, what kind of impact do you think the government will have on creating jobs?"
  • 34 percent said positive impact
  • 22 percent said negative impact
  • 44 percent said no impact at all
While the unemployed in the US were divided in the question when asked, "What kind of impact do you think the new administration will have on creating jobs?"
  • 39 percent said positive impact
  • 35 percent said negative impact
  • 26 percent said no impact at all 

Unemployed in both countries say we are  "Headed in Wrong Direction"

Unemployed Canadians were asked, "Would you say things in the country are headed in the right direction, or the wrong direction regarding the economy?
Unemployed Americans answered in a similar fashion.
  • 40% said the country was headed in the right direction.
  • 60% said the country was headed in the wrong direction
Robert A. "Bob" Funk is chairman and chief executive officer of Express Employment Professionals. Headquartered in Oklahoma City, the international staffing company has more than 770 franchises in the U.S., Canada and South Africa. Under his leadership, Express has put more than 6 million people to work worldwide. Funk served as Chairman of the Conference of Chairmen of the Federal Reserve and was also the Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

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