the rennie outlook 2021


jobs, inflation, & interest rates: getting back on track


During the spring of 2020, employment across the country (and indeed around the world) suffered its largest decline since the Great Depression. Here in Metro Vancouver this was certainly true, with 264,000 jobs shed between February and May (a span of 3 months). To put the magnitude and speed of this downturn into context, employment in Metro Vancouver during what had previously been considered the economic downturn of a generation—the Great Recession of 2008/9—fell by 39,000 jobs over the course of 14 months.

Importantly, employment has significantly recovered since May 2020, and is now at 97% of its pre-Covid level.

OUR 2021 OUTLOOK Metro Vancouver’s job base will expand by between 3-4% in 2021, following an overall decline of almost 3% in 2020 (which reflected an 18% decline between and January and May and an 18% rebound between May and December).



Metro Vancouver’s labour market was, arguably, functioning better than any in Canada before the pandemic set in, with an unemployment rate of 4.0% in January 2020, equaling an historic low. Despite a precipitous decline in employment that pushed the regional unemployment rate to an all-time high of 14.2% in June, the steady economic recovery since then has resulted in the region’s unemployment rate falling to 7.0% in December—the lowest among all large metro areas in Canada.

OUR 2021 OUTLOOK With reduced population growth in 2020 serving to constrain labour supply, and a continued re-opening of the economy, the regional unemployment rate will fall back into the range of 5-6% in 2021.


Copyright © 2021 rennie group of companies. All rights reserved. This material may not be reproduced or distributed, in whole or in part, without the prior written permission of the rennie group of companies. Current as of January 18, 2021. All data from Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver and Fraser Valley & Rennie. While the information and data contained herein has been obtained from sources deemed reliable, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. rennie group of companies does not assume responsibility or liability for any inaccuracies. The recipient of the information should take steps as the recipient may deem necessary to verify the information prior to placing any reliance upon the information. The information contained within this report should not be used as an opinion of value, such opinions should and can be obtained from a rennie and associates advisor. All information is subject to change and any property may be withdrawn from the market at any time without notice or obligation to the recipient from rennie group of companies. E.&O.E. 7

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