UPDATE 1-Canada adds more than-expected 22,800 jobs in December

Fri Jan 8, 2016 8:37am EST
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(Adds details of release, background)

OTTAWA Jan 8 (Reuters) - Canada added a greater-than-expected 22,800 jobs in December, in part making up for heavy losses in the previous month, while the unemployment rate stayed at 7.1 percent, Statistics Canada data indicated on Friday.

Analysts polled by Reuters forecast a gain of 10,000 jobs. The economy shed 35,700 positions in November.

In December, the economy created 29,200 part-time jobs and lost 6,400 full-time positions. The hard-hit manufacturing and natural resources sectors reported modest gains of 6,100 and 3,800 jobs respectively.

Employment increased by 16,500 in healthcare and social assistance and by 15,400 in educational services, while dropping by 14,400 in accommodation and food services.

For 2015 as a whole, employment gains totaled 158,100, or 0.9 percent, slightly above the 0.7 percent year-on-year growth rate seen in both 2013 and 2014.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)