Moderna Inc. has completed enrollment of its 30,000 participants in its final-stage COVID-19 trial, while more than 25,000 volunteers have received their second shot.
The announcement on Thursday is another indication that vaccine trials are moving into their home stretch. Moderna has said it could get an initial readout on whether the vaccine works by late November. The drugmaker is only slightly behind Pfizer Inc., which is working with German biotech BioNTech SE and expects results from its 44,000-person trial as soon as the end of this month.
Moderna shares rose as much as 4.4 per cent on Thursday morning in New York. This year, the stock has more than tripled in value.
Moderna had slowed trial enrollment in September in order to recruit more minorities, a key goal of U.S. health officials. Overall, 37 per cent of volunteers in the trial come from communities of color, the company said. Also, 42 per cent of are at high risk of developing severe cases of Covid-19, either because they are 65 or older or have pre-existing conditions.
Both Moderna and Pfizer say they won’t submit for an emergency-use authorization until they have collected two months of safety data on the participants. That means that even if Pfizer gets positive initial results this month, it won’t submit for an emergency authorization until after it gets the safety results in the third week of November.
Canada adds 62000 jobs in November; unemployment rate falls to 8.5 per cent – The Globe and Mail
The Canadian labour market continues to defy expectations – at least for now.
Employment rose by 62,100 in November and the unemployment rate declined to 8.5 per cent from October’s 8.9 per cent, Statistics Canada said Friday. The gain was propelled by full-time work, which saw an increase of nearly 100,000 positions. All told, the labour market has recovered about 80 per cent of the three-million jobs that were lost in March and April.
November’s job gain was the weakest since the recovery began in May. However, it was also better than expected. The median estimate from economists was for a gain of 20,000 positions, with several calling for a decline due to tighter COVID-19 restrictions.
A decline may simply be postponed. Statscan’s report pertained to work conditions between Nov. 8 and 14, thereby missing further tightening of restrictions in some parts of the country, such as Toronto and nearby Peel Region.
“As a result, it’s likely that Covid will catch up with the Canadian economy in the December data, with a decline expected in both employment and overall economic activity,” said Royce Mendes, senior economist at CIBC Capital Markets, in a note to clients.
The November report showed various cracks in the labour market. For one, Manitoba lost around 18,000 jobs. Before Statscan’s survey period, the province had imposed tighter public-health measures – including a ban on in-person shopping of non-essential goods – in a bid to curb rapidly worsening infections. Most of those affected last month were working part-time hours, Statscan noted.
At a national level, the information, culture and recreation industry lost 26,000 positions. Accommodation and food services fell by 24,000 jobs for its second consecutive monthly decline. About one-quarter of people on temporary layoff last month were in the hospitality industry. It’s almost assured that more pain is coming as restaurants are targeted by restrictions and bookings fall dramatically.
There were, however, several encouraging signs in November’s report. With its latest gain, the finance, insurance and real-estate industry is back to prepandemic levels of employment. Construction had a banner month, adding 26,000 positions – the first increase since July, driven largely by Ontario.
Furthermore, all Atlantic provinces enjoyed job growth. New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia are all back to pre-crisis levels of employment.
The second wave of COVID-19 continues to disrupt work. There were 4.6 million Canadians who worked from home in November, among those who worked at least half their usual hours. That was an increase of roughly 250,000 from October.
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Canada added 62,000 jobs in November, slowest month of recovery since COVID-19 – CBC.ca
Canada’s economy added 62,000 jobs last month, which is better than economists had been expecting, but it’s also the lowest total since the labour market recovery from COVID-19 began in May.
Statistics Canada reported Friday that the jobless rate ticked down four basis points to 8.5 per cent. That’s down from a peak of 13.7 per cent in May, but still well above the 5.6 per cent rate seen in February, before the pandemic.
Canada lost more than a million jobs in March and another two million in April, before the job market started to recover in May. According to Statscan, more than 19.1 million Canadians aged 15 or over had some sort of job in February. Last month, that figure stood at just over 18.6 million.
There are currently 1.7 million people in Canada officially categorized as unemployed, which means they would like to work but can’t find any. Roughly one quarter of them — 443,000 people — have been out of work for more than half a year.
Manitoba lost 18,000 jobs last month, while Ontario added 36,000 and Quebec 15,000. British Columbia added 23,000 and the Atlantic provinces added a total of 17,000.
Mostly full time
While the overall rate of job gains is undeniably slowing, economist Royce Mendes with CIBC did see some reason for optimism in the numbers, specifically the fact that most of the new jobs were full time, which boosted the total number of hours worked by 1.2 per cent — faster than the increase seen a month earlier.
But with cases spiking across Canada and more regions locking down more parts of the economy, he thinks the streak of job gains will come to an end this month.
“It’s likely that COVID will catch up with the Canadian economy in the December data, with a decline expected in both employment and overall economic activity,” Mendes said.
Leah Nord with the Canadian Chamber of Commerce said the job slowdown shows that the government needs to do a better jobs of testing for COVID-19 and tracing contacts, and making much broader use of rapid testing to ensure businesses stay open for the long Canadian winter ahead.
“The short-lived partial rebound in jobs is turning an unfortunate corner heading into a potentially protracted second wave,” she said. “As we look forward, we believe there is increasing risk for a steady decline in employment over the coming months as governments and health authorities grapple with transmission mitigation.”
Canadian economy added 62,000 jobs in November, unemployment rate fell to 8.5% – CityNews Toronto
The rate of job growth continued to slow in November with the economy adding 62,000 jobs, down from 84,000 in October.
The gains were mostly focused in full-time work with a gain of 99,000 jobs, offset somewhat by a decline in part-time work of 37,000 positions, Statistics Canada reported Friday.
The average economist estimate had been for a gain of 20,000 jobs and an unchanged unemployment rate, according to financial data firm Refinitiv.
The gains in November left the country 574,000 jobs short of recouping the approximately three million jobs lost from lockdowns in March and April that sent the unemployment rate skyrocketing to 13.7 per cent in May.
The unemployment rate fell to 8.5 per cent compared with 8.9 per cent in October.
The unemployment rate would have been 10.9 per cent in November, StatCan said, had it included in calculations Canadians who wanted to work last month but didn’t search for a job.
The agency said 1.5 million people searched for jobs in November, a small drop of 39,000 from October, but still more than 448,000 or so who were looking for work in February, pre-pandemic.
The report noted that job searchers made up an increasing share of the total number of unemployed.
The youth unemployment rate fell 1.4 per cent to 17.4 per cent with a gain of about 20,000 jobs for the age group, mostly concentrated among young men with little change to the employment situation for women age 15 to 24.
Similarly, employment among women 25 to 54 years old didn’t change much in November after six straight months of seeing their numbers rise.
Positions in the hard-hit accommodation and food services sector declined for the second consecutive month, shedding 24,000 jobs in November.
That figure doesn’t take into account renewed restrictions in areas like Toronto that kicked in later in the month.
“As a result, it’s likely that COVID will catch up with the Canadian economy in the December data, with a decline expected in both employment and overall economic activity,” notes CIBC senior economist Royce Mendes.
Overall, the pace of job gains has slowed, with employment rising by 0.3 per cent in November compared to an average of 2.7 per cent per month between May and September.
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