Canada shed a total of 21,900 jobs in January, however the unemployment rate edged down one-tenth of a point to 7.0 percent last month, the lowest it's been since December 2008, Statistics Canada said Friday.
Statistics Canada said the jobless rate ticked 0.1 percentage points lower as 57,500 people stopped looking for jobs - more than enough to offset the decline in the number of jobs.
In the last five months of 2012, the Canadian economy created an average of 37,000 jobs a month. That was against a backdrop of official GDP data that showed the economy wasn't expanding much.
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The data agency said that most of the job losses came from the public sector, where there were 27,000 fewer positions. Self-employment rose slightly, and the private sector was largely unchanged.
Meanwhile, the construction industry was a bright spot, adding 17,000 positions during the month.
The manufacturing sector lost 22,000 jobs, bringing total employment in that key sector down to the same level it was at a year ago.