May 28, 2009

Average Canadian earnings up in March

Canadians' average weekly earnings, including overtime, rose 2.4 percent in March to $824.98 over a year prior, Statistics Canada reported from Ottawa Thursday.

By sector on an annual basis, non-farm payroll employees' incomes grew by 3.6 percent in retail trade, 2.4 percent in health care and social assistance, 2.4 percent in accommodation and food services and 2.2 percent in public administration, StatsCan said.

Average weekly earnings in educational services were unchanged from March 2008, the report said.

Weekly earnings continued to decline in the manufacturing sector, down 2.8 percent from a year ago.

Regionally, the biggest increase in average weekly earnings was in Newfoundland and Labrador, up 6.4 percent from March 2008. Alberta and Prince Edward Island were second with growth of 5.6 percent each.

While average earnings were up, total non-farm payroll jobs fell by 60,700 in March, down 0.4 percent from February, the agency said.