By Rachel Muenz
For some dumb reason, I thought Russia had been hit much harder than Canada in the global recession. On Oct. 13, I happened to be reading the Moscow Times and almost all the front page news was about the recession. Canadian papers, in contrast, haven’t had much about the recession on their front pages in a while.
So I put two and two together and figured Russia must be really hard done by compared to North America. I thought that even though I’ve been having a tough time getting a job, at least I don’t have to find one in Russia. It seemed impossible based on all those gloomy articles.
That assessment would have been right at the beginning of the recession.
In Canada, from October 2008 to April 2009, the unemployment rate climbed from 6.2 percent to 8.0 percent, according to Stats Canada. During that same period in Russia, unemployment rose from 5.8 percent to 10.2 percent, according to figures from the Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Russia cited by ITV News.
But, Russia is doing much better now.
The most recent statistics cited in the Moscow Times put Russia’s unemployment rate at 8.1 percent while Stats Canada shows Canada’s unemployment rate is now 8.4 percent. So, either the stats are wrong or the editor of the Moscow Times was particularly depressed on Oct. 13.
Still, at least Canada is better off than the U.S. – the latest figures from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics say its unemployment rate is 9.8 percent. Yet, there haven’t been many articles about how awful the recession is on the front of the New York Times lately.
Maybe the North American media isn’t as negative about the economy as everyone’s been saying, after all. Either that or they’ve just got sick of complaining.