The greater Ottawa and Gatineau area together, with a population of 1,282,500, have 85 percent of the metropolitan population but 92 percent of the jobs. CIBC's Metro Monitor reports that in the first quarter of 2006, the Ottawa-Gatineau economy performed consistently well above average in most of the important indicators such as government, building construction, employment, and lower rates of business and consumer bankruptcies. Metro Monitor also noted that the surge in high-tech activity is probably playing an important role in the city\s impressive showing. There is a slight drag, however, on overall economic performance due to a slowing of the housing market.
As stated in the Ottawa Business Journal, the local unemployment rate fell 0.2 percentage points to 6.4 percent in April 2011 as the National Capital Region added 2,200 jobs in Ottawa-Gatineau. The increase adds to a strong 4,500-job hike in March, following more than half a year of either employment declines or little or no gains. From December 2010 to April 2011, there were approximately 8,200 added jobs in Ottawa-Gatineau.
According to the Ottawa Business Journal, the health care and social assistance and public administration sectors had the most significant job losses. However, both industries had some of the biggest increases year-over-year; the public administration sector has added about 6,000 jobs in Ottawa-Gatineau from April 2010 to April 2011, resulting in employment totalling 170,000; and the health care and social assistance industry adding about 5,000 jobs in Ottawa-Gatineau. Meanwhile, the local tech sector continues to suffer losses, with employment falling to 43,400 from April 2010.
According to Statistics Canada, most of the jobs in Ottawa-Gatineau area are in the sales and service occupation, followed by the business, finance and administration occupations, followed by occupations in social science, education, government service and religion. According to industry, business services, retail trade, and health care and social assistance are the top three means for jobs in Ottawa-Gatineau.