Statistics Canada released details on payroll employment, earnings and hours for April 2019. Average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees were $1,023 in April, up 0.7% from March. Compared with 12 months earlier, earnings grew by 2.9%.

In general, changes in weekly earnings reflect a number of factors, including wage growth; changes in the composition of employment by industry, occupation and level of job experience; and average hours worked per week.

Non-farm payroll employees worked an average of 32.8 hours per week in April, unchanged from the previous month and little changed from 12 months earlier. The number of non-farm payroll employees rose by 17,000 from March to April. The largest monthly increases were in educational services; professional, scientific and technical services; and information and cultural industries. At the same time, payroll employment declined in administrative and support services and in accommodation and food services.

On a year-over-year basis, average weekly earnings were up in 8 of the 10 largest industrial sectors, led by administrative and support services with an increase of 8.3% to $828 in April 2019. At the same time, earnings decreased in retail trade by 1.5% and were $597, general merchandise stores and miscellaneous store retailers were the largest contributors to the decrease. Average weekly hours in the retail sector were down by 3.5%.

Compared with April 2018, average weekly earnings rose in nine provinces, led by Nova Scotia. At the same time, earnings were little changed in Alberta. In Nova Scotia, average weekly earnings increased by 4.6% to $896 in April, with gains spread across many sectors. 

To explore the most recent results of the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours in an interactive format, visit the “Earnings and payroll employment in brief: Interactive app.

Source: Stats Canada