Canada has a long established history of accepting immigrants from diverse ethno-racial backgrounds to meet the labour market needs in the “knowledge based economy”. However, since the 1980s, there have been declines observed in the economic success of recent cohorts of immigrants. At the same time, there has been a shift in source country composition towards non-traditional source regions in Asia, Africa, Southern and Eastern Europe. This shift has been accompanied by an increase in the human capital of immigrants, in terms of their educational qualifications and work experience as a by-product of the new points system. An explanation for the economic decline is that the institutional barriers of prejudice and discrimination have barred recent immigrants from access to high skilled employment. Nevertheless, one should also consider the massive restructuring of the labour market and its effects on the most vulnerable cohorts: immigrants; women; racialized people and youth.