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Parliamentary Budget Officer Jean-Denis Fréchette is shown in Ottawa on Sept. 20, 2013.
Parliamentary Budget Officer Jean-Denis Fréchette is shown in Ottawa on Sept. 20, 2013.
(DAVE CHAN FOR THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

How Kijiji's data threw off Ottawa’s math on skills shortages

Economists have been scratching their heads for weeks as to how the Conservative government could claim on budget day that Canada’s job vacancy rate was on the rise when Statistics Canada said it was declining.

The answer, it appears, is that Finance Canada’s numbers were thrown off by data from a surprising place: questionable job postings on Kijiji, a popular classified site used by Canadians to buy and sell everything from rarely used exercise bikes to old electronics.