The number of Canadians receiving federal jobless benefits was near flat in November at 539,000 from a month earlier, Statistics Canada reported Thursday.
The number dipped from 541,200 in October, continuing a year-long downward trend as the unemployment rate in November stood at 7.4 percent, the agency said.
There were some wide disparities in initial and renewal claims among the 10 provinces.
"While claims fell 4.2 percent in Ontario, they increased 5.7 percent in Manitoba and 5 percent in Saskatchewan. There was little or no change in the other provinces," StatsCan said.
By gender on an annual basis, the number of men receiving jobless benefits decreased 19.9 percent to 268,700 while women's claims totaled 198,700, down 17.3 percent from November 2010, the report said.