Q4 2021 Economic and Job Market Indicators

To keep the public and business community informed on the economy of the region, the COEDC - the Region’s primary business resource - releases a quarterly Economic Indicators Report highlighting key economic data for the Central Okanagan. The Q4 2021 Economic Indicators report includes cumulative statistics for 9 key economic indicators for January through December 2021

This Job Market Indicators Report, first released in 2021, provides a snapshot of the Central Okanagan’s labour force and job market through data collected from Vicinity Jobs, a real-time labour market information technology platform.

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Both reports are publicly available in the Resources page in the COEDC website.

The Kelowna CMA grew 2.6% in 2021 compared to 2020 and 14% from 2016-2021 – the highest growth rate of any metropolitan area in Canada, outpacing the Provincial (7.6%) and National (5.2%) rates.

As many employers report labour challenges, the number of people in the Central Okanagan labour force remained relatively steady (-0.5%) and the unemployment rate decreased from an average of 7.3% in 2020 to 5.4% in 2021.

On the business side, the region saw an increase of 6.1% in business licenses (15,426 in total) for 2021, with Lake Country (9.6%) leading the way.


The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation saw housing starts in the region rise 82% with an emphasis on multi-family units. The median price for a new single/semi-detached home in the region sits at $1,025,000, up 3.5% over 2020.

The unemployment rate and job postings saw a steady recovery in 2021. The unemployment rate decreased by 1.9% and job postings increased by 42.5% as the economy and demand for staff grew. Job seekers - individuals who created a profile in job portals - increased by 15.2% last year.

When looking at job postings by occupation category, the largest increase in postings was in Health (139.9%), followed by Sales (44.8%) and Trades (43%) occupations, while in the job postings by industry category, the largest increase in postings occurred in Health Care & Social Assistance (186.4%), Retail Trade (55.7%) and Professional, Scientific & Technical Services (45.1%).

The largest increase in job seekers by occupation category was in Trades, Transport & Equipment Operators (26.1%), followed by Education, Law & Social, Government Services (22.7%) and Sales & Services (14.2%). Meanwhile, the largest increase in job seekers by industry occurred in Health Care & Social Assistance (47.4%), followed by Manufacturing (19.6%) and Retail Trade (19.5%).

Note the Commission collects the above third-party statistical data from BC Stats, Statistics Canada, CMHC, Vicinity Jobs, and local governments in the Central Okanagan. Caution should be used in the interpretation of month-to-month statistics, in particular the Labour Force Survey, a monthly sample survey which provides unemployment rates of the Canadian labour market.

To learn more about the COEDC and what we do visit www.investkelowna.com.