FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. jumped 1.6 percent in the last month to reach 7.9 percent in May.

According to data released by Stats Canada on Friday, the unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. jumped from 6.3 percent in April. Despite the increase in the unemployment rate for the fifth straight month, the region only lost around 100 jobs from April to May. In fact, the region saw an increase of estimated 100 full-jobs and a drop of 200 part-time jobs compared to the month prior.

The rate of employment in the region dropped after four straight months of increases, but only by 0.1 percent to 68.6 percent. Northeast B.C.’s rate of employment is still the highest of all economic regions of B.C.

Northeast B.C.’s unemployment rate was the second-highest of any region in B.C. The lowest rate of unemployment was recorded in the Lower Mainland where only 4.4 percent of the labour force was without work, while the next lowest rate on Vancouver Island was 5.2 percent. The highest unemployment rate in B.C last month was recorded in the North Coast-Nechako region, where 8.8 percent of the labour force lacked a job.

The unemployment rate across the province was steady at 4.9 percent, while the national unemployment rate dropped from 6.2 to 6.1 percent last month.