Payroll earnings increased in March from February: StatsCan

Average weekly earnings up 0.5 per cent
||Last Updated: 05/27/2011

Non-farm payroll earnings increased 0.5 per cent in March 2011 compared to February, according to Statistics Canada.

The average weekly earnings increased to $876.53. Compared to March 2010, average weekly earnings were 4.1 per cent higher in March 2011, according to “The Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours” from the May 26 edition of The Daily.

Some of the growth in earnings is attributed to a growth in hours worked. Time worked in March was up 0.3 per cent to 33 hours a week.

The rest of the increase is attributable to other factors including wage growth, changes in the composition of employment by industry and by occupation and level of job experience, according to the survey.

Every province saw an increase in average weekly earnings in the 12 months to March. Growth in Newfoundland and Labrador, Alberta and Quebec was above the national average. Nova Scotia had the slowest growth at 2.1 per cent.

In five of the 10 largest industrial sectors, growth in average weekly earnings was above the national average, led by wholesale trade and manufacturing. The slowest growth in earnings was in the educational services industry.

Average weekly earnings in wholesale trade increased 6.3 per cent in the 12 months to March, to $1,082.34.

Manufacturing had the second fastest year-over-year growth in weekly average earnings. Employment in the industry declined from 2003 until August 2008 and dropped sharply until December 2009 during the global economic downturn. Average monthly job losses in the industry from August 2008 to December 2009 were 14,500.

But since December 2009, manufacturing payroll employment has seen average monthly gains of 2,400.

Average weekly hours worked were 33 hours in March, unchanged from the past nine months.

The average workweek was up 0.3 per cent compared with March 2010.

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