Wholesale and Retail Trade

Overview

Employment summary

Growth (2014-2015):
-1.4%
Job growth (2014-2015):
-5,100
Total employment (2015):
352,900

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Key points
  • The Wholesale and Retail Trade industry is the largest employer in B.C. In 2015, it accounted for just over 15 percent of all jobs in the province.
  • The industry is sensitive to general economic conditions, as well as to changing consumer trends.
  • Most jobs in this industry are located in the regions with the highest populations: Mainland / Southwest and Vancouver Island / Coast.
  • Wages for most workers in this industry are below the provincial all-industry average.

Wholesalers and retailers sell consumers goods that have been purchased from suppliers. The goods sold are produced locally or imported from other regions and other countries.

Wholesalers can be thought of as “middle men,” usually supplying goods for resale or industrial use.

Retailers generally deal directly with final consumers of goods, primarily individuals and households.

The Wholesale and Retail Trade industry includes everything from small corner stores to big-box chains and wholesale distribution centres.

Workforce

Gender

Employment by gender in 2015

  Men: 52%
  Women: 48%

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Provincial average in 2015

  Men: 52%
  Women: 48%

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Age groups

% of employees under 25 years of age

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

% of employees 55 years and older

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Employment

Types of employment

2010 2015 B.C. average (2015)
Part time
(% of employees working part time)
2010
28%
2015
26%
B.C. average (2015)
21%
Self-employed
(% of employees who are self-employed)
2010
13%
2015
12%
B.C. average (2015)
18%
Temporary jobs
(% of employees in temporary jobs)
2010
10%
2015
10%
B.C. average (2015)
14%

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Workplace

% of workers in firms less than 20 employees

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

% of workers in private sector jobs

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Unemployment rate

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Earnings

Average hourly wages in this industry

Men

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Women

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Youth

  • 2010
  • 2015
  • B.C. average (2015)

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Location of work

Select your region:
Vancouver Island / Coast Mainland / Southwest Thompson-Okanagan Kootenay Cariboo Northeast North Coast & Nechako
  % employment of this industry
  % employment of all industries

Vancouver Island / Coast

Mainland / Southwest

Thompson-Okanagan

Kootenay

Cariboo

North Coast & Nechako

Northeast

Source: 2015 Labour Force Survey

Employment outlook

2016 2020 2025
Forecasted employment
2016
353,100
2020
376,700
2025
404,700

Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook

Forecasted average annual employment growth rate

  • 2016 - 2020
  • 2020 - 2025

Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook

Forecasted industry share of total employment

  • 2016
  • 2020
  • 2025

Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook

Additional resources

Industry Canada
http://www.strategis.ic.gc.ca/engdoc/main.html

North American Industry Classification System
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/concepts/industry-industrie-eng.htm

Retail Council of Canada
http://www.retailcouncil.org

Retail Wholesale Union
http://www.rwunion.com

Shelfspace – The Association for Retail Entrepreneurs
http://www.shelfspace.ca