Canadian Labour Market Shows Improvement in Payroll Gains

A recent payroll survey from Statistics Canada shows that the nation’s overall labour market is headed in a positive direction.

Many economists consider StatCans’s monthly survey of employment, payroll and hours to be a valuable and highly accurate representation of the current labour market. Because this particular survey relies on actual business payrolls and Canada Revenue Agency payroll data for its data, it’s often a much better indicator than the labour force survey, which simply relies on data from a telephone poll that asks Canadians about their employment situation.

This past spring’s survey reported a number of noteworthy improvements to the Canadian labour market in a range of sections.

Here are a few of the highlights.

–       Total non-farm employment rose 8,500 in the month of May

–       Accelerated wage growth continues to occur across the country. The average weekly earnings were up 0.9 per cent in May, which is the biggest month-to-month increase in over a year. Similarly, on a year-to-year basis, weekly wages were also up by 2.5 per cent.

Provinces with the highest wage increases:

Alberta (up 4.9 per cent from last year)

Saskatchewan (up 4.8 per cent last year)

Provinces with the lowest wage increases:

Quebec (up 1.2 per cent)

New Brunswick (up 1.2 per cent)

Sector making the biggest gains

The industry that saw the highest growth in earnings this past spring was construction. With a 6.2 per cent wage increase year over year, construction has by far the strongest employment conditions in its sector.

Slow wage increases

Yet despite all of the positive changes taking place in the labour market, wages are still lagging behind in the education sector. The lack of wage increases across educational services—which are down 0.6 per cent for the 12 months— reflect government cuts affecting elementary and secondary school teachers. Wage growth was also weak in retail (up 0.2 per cent) and manufacturing (up 0.6 per cent).

For more information about payroll gains in Canada, contact Employment Professionals Canada today.