Canada's jobless rate unexpectedly fell to the lowest in almost five years in September as young people dropped out of the labour market.
Unemployment declined to 6.9% from 7.1% in August, the lowest since December 2008, Statistics Canada said today.
Job creation slowed to 11,900 in September from 59,200 in August as 21,400 workers aged 15 to 24 left the labour force.
Economists had projected a 10,000 job increase and an unchanged jobless rate, according to median forecasts.
The unemployment rate declined "as fewer youths searched for work," Statistics Canada said in its report today.
Slowing job creation and signs of discouraged workers come a week after the Bank of Canada cut its economic growth forecast for the rest of the year with Senior Deputy Governor Tiff Macklem citing an "elusive" pickup in exports and investment.
Job growth has slowed after domestic spending and employment gains pulled Canada out of a recession triggered by the 2008 global financial crisis.
Full-time employment rose by 23,400 in September and part- time work fell by 11,500 positions. Private companies added 73,600 workers and public-sector employment fell by 16,300.
Finance, insurance, property and leasing led the job gains by industry with an increase of 33,200 in September. Natural resources employment rose by 18,900.
Manufacturing employment fell by 26,000 and construction by 14,100, Statistics Canada said. Public administration positions fell by 17,400, and has dropped by 7.2% over the last seven months.
Finance Minister Jim Flaherty's last budget had a plan to shrink the federal workforce to help eliminate a deficit.