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Alberta EI rolls swell 10% in May

There were 527,100 people receiving government jobless benefits in May, a growing number due largely to job losses in Alberta.

Stripping out the province, 3,200 fewer people in Canada were on EI in May than in same 2014 month

Michel Bédard is the former chief actuary for the EI program and co-author of a report that says Canada's employment insurance system is broken 5:40

There were 527,100 people in Canada receiving government jobless benefits in May, an increase largely driven by Alberta.

Statistics Canada reported Thursday that the ranks of employment insurance beneficiaries swelled by 4,800 compared to the previous month, and by 15,400 compared to the same period a year ago.

But if Alberta is stripped out, there were 3,200 fewer people on EI in May than in the same month a year earlier, meaning the national increase was almost entirely driven by Alberta.

Alberta's EI rolls swelled for the seventh consecutive month in May, up by more than 10 per cent from April to 48,800 in May.

In other provinces, smaller increases were recorded in Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia. On the other hand, there were slightly fewer beneficiaries in Ontario and Manitoba.

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