Media Release: Ontario records robust job gains in 2022 marking the strongest two-year increase on record

[La version française suit le texte anglais.]


TORONTO, March 21, 2023  Today, the Financial Accountability Office of Ontario (FAO) released a report that provides an update on Ontario’s employment performance in 2022 and highlights major challenges facing the province's labour market.

Ontario's strong post-pandemic job creation continued in 2022, with employment increasing by 338,300 jobs. When combined with the rise in 2021, this marks the strongest two-year period of job gains on record. The annual unemployment rate in the province dropped to 5.6 per cent, the same as the pre-pandemic rate observed in 2019.

Ontario's job gains were broad-based across all major age groups and genders, and concentrated in full-time, private sector positions. While job gains were recorded across all major Ontario cities, employment in some regions remained below the pre-pandemic 2019 level including Greater Sudbury, Thunder Bay and Brantford.

Despite strong job creation, the Ontario labour market continues to face challenges. Hiring difficulties persisted with a record 36.3 per cent of job vacancies remaining unfilled for 90 days or more. At the same time, a record number of employees were absent from work due to illness or disability.  Some industries operated with fewer employees in 2022 compared to before the pandemic, including accommodation and food services, business, building and support services, agriculture, and transportation and warehousing.

With the CPI inflation rate reaching a 40-year high of 6.8 per cent in 2022, workers continued to see their real wages decline. The average hourly wage rate in Ontario increased 4.2 per cent in 2022, trailing inflation for the second consecutive year.

Find our full report on our website, here.

Quick facts:

  • Young workers (15-24 years) recorded an 8.4 per cent rise in employment, the strongest pace of job growth compared to other major age groups.
  • The share of the core-age population (25-54 years) that was employed reached an all-time high of 83.9 per cent in 2022.
  • After declining for two consecutive years by 21.8 per cent, the number of workers 55 years and older who retired increased by 41.8 per cent in 2022.
  • In 2022, Ontario recorded the fifth lowest unemployment rate in the country, trailing British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Quebec.

About the FAO

Under the Financial Accountability Officer Act, 2013, the Officer provides independent analysis on the state of the Province's finances, trends in the provincial economy, and related matters important to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario. Visit our website and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.


For further information, please contact:
Jessica Martin  |  647.527.2385  |  |