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Tuesday, December 22, 2015 - Wages still falling

Nick Ford • Economist

December 22, 2015

Wages still falling

In their monthly Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours, Statistics Canada revealed that Alberta was the only province to record a decrease in average weekly earnings over the year in October. Though wages did increase minimally from September to October (+0.6 per cent), wages were down by 1.8 per cent from last year.

Despite this yearly decline, Albertans continue to be paid the highest wages of all the provinces. On average, employees currently bring in about $1,145 per week (including overtime). That’s 13 per cent higher than the second-place Newfoundland and Labrador ($1013) and 15 per cent higher than third-place Saskatchewan ($997).

The resource-driven occupations saw a reduction in wages over the course of the year and, in October, wages managed to bump up slightly (+0.7 per cent). Wages in mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction remain unchanged from last year. Employees in construction (-8.9 per cent), accommodation and food services (-4.5 per cent), and real estate and leasing (-4.3 per cent) saw hefty pay cuts since October of last year. Employees in forestry, logging and support (+11.1 per cent), manufacturing (+9.3 per cent) as well as utilities (+6.6 per cent) saw gains over the same twelve months.

As we head into the New Year, many sectors will continue to tussle with the ongoing economic environment. This will cause headaches for some employers and ultimately mean our wallets may not be as heavy as in years past.

*Starting tomorrow, the Owl will be resting its wings to celebrate the holidays. We will be back on Wednesday, January 6th, 2016. Happy Holidays!

posted in General at Tue, 22 Dec 2015 10:25:26 -0700



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