Economists had been expecting about half a million jobs to be lost

Canada’s economy lost more than one million jobs in March, Statistics Canada said Thursday, pushing the jobless rate up to 7.8 per cent.

Economists had been expecting the figure to come in at around 500,000 jobs lost, which already would have been the worst month for job losses on record.

Every month, the data agency surveys Canadians over the course of a single week to come up with its employment number for the month.

March’s data is culled from surveys in the week that started March 15 — a tumultuous week for Canadian society, as within seven days, Canadians went from packing for March break vacations to sheltering in place as businesses across the country locked themselves down to try to contain the spread of COVID-19.

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