Payroll employment, earnings and hours, September 2016
Average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees were $957 in September, virtually unchanged from the previous month (-0.1%) and up 0.4% from 12 months earlier.
In general, the change in weekly earnings reflects a number of factors, including wage growth, changes in the composition of employment by industry, occupation and level of job experience, as well as average hours worked per week.
Non-farm payroll employees worked an average of 32.7 hours per week in September, unchanged from the previous month and down from 33.0 hours in September 2015.
Average weekly earnings by sector
In the 12 months to September, retail trade was the lone sector with a notable increase in average weekly earnings among the 10 largest industrial sectors. At the same time, average earnings declined in wholesale trade and health care and social assistance, and were little changed in the other sectors.
Compared with 12 months earlier, average weekly earnings in retail trade rose 3.4% to $565. Earnings increases were spread across many subsectors, with general merchandise stores as well as health and personal care stores contributing the most to the growth.
Average weekly earnings in wholesale trade fell by 2.6% to $1,138 in the 12 months to September. The decline was driven by earnings losses for wholesalers of machinery, equipment and supplies. The year-over-year decrease in this subsector was partly due to the fact that earnings were relatively high in September 2015.
On a year-over-year basis, average weekly earnings in health care and social assistance were down 1.2% to $864. Notable losses were in hospitals as well as nursing and residential care facilities. Earnings in the health care and social assistance sector have been relatively stable since the start of 2015, following a period of growth through 2013 and 2014.
Average weekly earnings by province
Compared with 12 months earlier, average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees increased in seven provinces, led by Prince Edward Island. At the same time, average earnings declined in Alberta.
In the 12 months to September, average weekly earnings in Prince Edward Island rose 3.3% to $832. Earnings increases were spread across many sectors, with much of the gain attributable to manufacturing. Earnings in this province have been on a slight upward trend since the start of the year.
Compared with 12 months earlier, average weekly earnings in New Brunswick were up 2.3% to $876, with most of the growth occuring from September 2015 to March 2016. On a year-over-year basis, the largest increases were in real estate and rental and leasing as well as finance and insurance. On the other hand, earnings fell in educational services and construction.
Average earnings in Quebec grew 1.8% to $887 from September 2015. Earnings increased in many sectors, with manufacturing contributing the most to the growth. There was also a notable earnings increase in information and cultural industries.
Compared with 12 months earlier, average weekly earnings in Nova Scotia rose 1.8% to $852, led by gains in health care and social assistance, real estate and rental and leasing, as well as public administration.
On a year-over-year basis, average earnings in Manitoba were up 1.4% to $892. Earnings increases were spread across several sectors, such as retail trade and finance and insurance.
On the other hand, average earnings in Alberta fell 1.7% to $1,118. Earnings and employment declined in many sectors compared with September 2015. The largest earnings decreases were in professional, scientific and technical services as well as wholesale trade.
For more information about recent trends in Alberta's labour market, consult the research article "The Impact of Lower Earnings in Alberta on Earnings Growth at the National Level," which is part of the Economic Insights series (11-626-X).
There was little change in earnings in Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador.
Non-farm payroll employment by sector
The number of non-farm payroll jobs was up 65,200 (+0.4%) in September, following a decline of 12,600 in August. Payroll employment increased the most in manufacturing, public administration, health care and social assistance as well as accommodation and food services. At the same time, there were fewer payroll employees in mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction.
Compared with September 2015, the number of non-farm payroll employees rose by 217,100 or 1.4%. The largest increases were in health care and social assistance (+67,900 or +3.7%), accommodation and food services (+41,400 or +3.3%), public administration (+30,000 or +2.9%) and educational services (+27,100 or +2.2%).
Over the same period, there were fewer payroll jobs in mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction (-19,500 or -9.5%), construction (-9,800 or -1.0%), wholesale trade (-8,600 or -1.1%) and manufacturing (-7,600 or -0.5%).
Note to readers
The Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (SEPH) is produced by a combination of a census of approximately one million payroll deductions provided by the Canada Revenue Agency, and the Business Payrolls Survey, which collects data from a sample of 15,000 establishments. Federal, provincial and territorial public administration data are collected from various administrative records provided by these levels of government. The key objective of the SEPH is to provide a monthly portrait of the level of earnings and the number of jobs and hours worked by detailed industry at the national, provincial and territorial level.
Estimates of average weekly earnings and hours worked are based on a sample and are therefore subject to sampling variability. This analysis focuses on differences between estimates that are statistically significant at the 68% confidence level. Payroll employment estimates are based on a census of administrative data and are not subject to sampling variability.
Statistics Canada also produces employment estimates from its Labour Force Survey (LFS). The LFS is a monthly household survey, the main objective of which is to divide the working-age population into three mutually exclusive groups: the employed (including the self-employed), the unemployed and those not in the labour force. This survey is the official source for the unemployment rate and collects data on the socio-demographic characteristics of all those in the labour market.
As a result of conceptual and methodological differences, estimates of changes from SEPH and LFS do differ from time to time. However, the trends in the data are quite similar. To better understand the conceptual differences between employment measures from the LFS and SEPH, refer to section 8 of the Guide to the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (). 72-203-G
Unless otherwise stated, this release presents seasonally adjusted data, which facilitate comparisons by removing the effects of seasonal variations. For more information on seasonal adjustment, see Seasonally adjusted data – Frequently asked questions.
Non-farm payroll employment data are for all hourly and salaried employees, as well as for the "other employees" category, which includes piece-rate and commission-only employees.
Average weekly hours data are for hourly and salaried employees only and exclude businesses that could not be classified to a North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code.
All earnings data include overtime pay and exclude businesses that could not be classified to a NAICS code. Earnings data are based on gross taxable payroll before source deductions. Average weekly earnings are derived by dividing total weekly earnings by the number of employees.
With each release, data for the current reference month are subject to revision. Data have been revised for the previous month. Users are encouraged to request and use the most up-to-date data for each month.
The research article "The Impact of Lower Earnings in Alberta on Earnings Growth at the National Level," is available as a part of the Economic Insights series (). This article examines the pace of earnings growth for Canada as a whole during 2015 and the first half of 2016 and focuses on the impact that lower average earnings in Alberta have had on earnings growth during this period at the national level. 11-626-X
Real-time CANSIM tables
Data on payroll employment, earnings and hours for October will be released on December 21.
A summary table is also available.
Job Vacancy Statistics (survey number 5202) from the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours for August are now available in CANSIM.
More information about the concepts and use of the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours and Job Vacancy Statistics is available online in the Guide to the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (72-203-G).
For more information, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca).
To enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact Myriam Hazel (613-219-4345; firstname.lastname@example.org), Labour Statistics Division.
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