UPDATE 3-Modest Canada jobs gain shows little pressure for rate hike

Fri Dec 6, 2013 12:29pm EST
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* Canada records modest job growth for third month in a row

* Jobless rate stays at near five-year low

* Almost all the new jobs were part-time

* Canada data overshadowed by upbeat U.S. jobs figures

By David Ljunggren

OTTAWA, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Canada created 21,600 jobs in November, the third straight month of modest employment increases and a number that underscores the lack of pressure on the central bank to raise interest rates.

The increase in jobs reported by Statistics Canada on Friday, however, was much greater than the 12,000 forecast by market analysts. The unemployment rate stayed at a nearly five-year low of 6.9 percent.

The Bank of Canada - concerned about the amount of slack in the economy - kept its overnight interest rate at a near record low on Wednesday and expressed concern that inflation could be weaker than it has predicted.

"The Bank of Canada is focusing more on the inflation print than the employment print, though this will be welcome news for them. I think it is unlikely to shift the tone that they left us with this week," said Camilla Sutton, chief currency strategist at Scotiabank.   Continued...