EDMONTON -- Alberta's jobless rate held mostly steady in April even as the country shed more than 200,000 jobs last month, according to the latest employment numbers from Statistics Canada. 

The province's unemployment rate now sits at nine per cent, down a tenth of a per cent from the previous report. 

The unemployment rate in Edmonton now sits at 10.5 per cent, down from 11.2 last month and fourth-highest among all census metropolitan areas (CMA), behind Belleville, Ont. (12 per cent), St. Catharines-Niagara, Ont. (11.7 per cent), and Windsor, Ont. (10.6).

Calgary's unemployment rate is now at 9.3 per cent, down from 10 per cent last month.

And Lethbridge, the only other Alberta CMA measured, has a jobless rate of over seven per cent, up by just under one per cent from the last report.  

All numbers are based on a seasonally-adjusted, three-month moving average. It cautions, however, that the figures may fluctuate widely because they are based on small statistical samples.

Nationally, the economy lost 207,000 jobs in April as a new rise in COVID-19 cases led to renewed public health restrictions that closed businesses.

The unemployment rate rose to 8.1 per cent from 7.5 per cent in March.

Statistics Canada says the number of employed people in April working less than half their usual hours increased by 288,000 or 27.2 per cent.

The losses in April nearly wiped out the 303,000 jobs added in March when the economy outpaced expectations and put the country about 503,100 jobs, or 2.6 per cent below pre-pandemic levels.

More losses were seen in full-time work than part-time work, with the figures respectively at 129,000 and 78,000, with the retail sector and young workers hit hardest.

Statistics Canada said the unemployment rate would have been 10.5 per cent in March had it included in calculations Canadians who wanted to work but didn't search for a job.

Here's a quick look at Canada's April employment (numbers from the previous month in brackets):

  •  Unemployment rate: 8.1 per cent (7.5)
  •  Employment rate: 59.6 per cent (60.3)
  •  Participation rate: 64.9 per cent (65.2)
  •  Number unemployed: 1,640,300 (1,516,700)
  •  Number working: 18,627,200 (18,834,300)
  •  Youth (15-24 years) unemployment rate: 16.1 per cent (14.0)
  •  Men (25 plus) unemployment rate: 6.6 per cent (6.6)
  •  Women (25 plus) unemployment rate: 7.0 per cent (6.2)

Here are the jobless rates last month by province (numbers from the previous month in brackets):

  •  Newfoundland and Labrador 13.9 per cent (12.4)
  •  Prince Edward Island 8.2 per cent (8.1)
  •  Nova Scotia 8.1 per cent (8.6)
  •  New Brunswick 8.5 per cent (9.2)
  •  Quebec 6.6 per cent (6.4)
  •  Ontario 9.0 per cent (7.5)
  •  Manitoba 7.4 per cent (6.8)
  •  Saskatchewan 6.6 per cent (7.3)
  •  Alberta 9.0 per cent (9.1)
  •  British Columbia 7.1 per cent (6.9)

With files from the Canadian Press