OTTAWA—Canada continued its stellar job-creation run in November with another blowout performance that included a sharp drop in the unemployment rate to near pre-pandemic levels.
Nearly all of the job gains were in the private sector. Hours worked also rose and, for the first time, returned to pre-pandemic levels. Average hourly wages rose more than 5% over a two-year period. Economists suggest the data could set the stage for a Bank of Canada rate rise in the first half of 2022, as early as April, depending on the fallout from the Covid-19 Omicron variant.