After a seven-month winning streak, Hamilton's unemployment rate rose for the second month in a row to 6.8 per cent in April from 6.1 per cent in March.

Statistics Canada released the numbers for the national employment rate Friday. Canada’s economy added 12,500 jobs in April, as more Canadians entered full-time work.

The national unemployment rate held steady at 7.2 per cent.

Economists had predicted a gain of about 15,000 jobs in April, following a dismal drop the month before. The country had unexpectedly lost 54,500 jobs in March, making it the worst month for Canadian employment since before the last recession, in February 2009.

April job gains were attributed to an increase in full-time employment across the country. Full-time jobs grew by 36,000, while part-time positions fell by 23,000.

Manufacturing work increased by 21,000, the first time the sector has added jobs since last June, Statistics Canada said.

While employment rose for Canadians overall, youth employment declined in April. There were 18,800 fewer jobs among people aged 15 to 24, and fewer youths looking for work.