01/27/2012 07:49 EST | Updated 03/28/2012 05:12 EDT

Canada's toughest job market is P.E.I.

P.E.I. has the toughest job market in the country, with more than nine people looking for work for every job vacancy, almost triple the national rate of 3.3, says Statistics Canada.

The 9.4 unemployed per job vacancy on P.E.I. is the highest ratio in the country. In other Maritime provinces, it was just under six. The lowest was in Saskatchewan, at 1.5.


The unemployed and job vacancies


This week's report is the first time Statistics Canada has looked at unemployment in this way, and takes an average over a three-month period from July through September. Because it is the first report of its kind, the numbers are not seasonally adjusted.

Both Statistics Canada and economists say further reports are needed to know if what they're seeing is a blip or a trend.

The experience on P.E.I., however, is that summer — with tourism, fish processing and agricultural jobs in full swing — is the best time to be looking for a job. Future reports could well show the situation only gets worse.