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National Construction Industry Wage Rate Survey

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The Daily

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Data from the 2006 National Construction Industry Wage Rate Survey (Atlantic provinces) are now available.

The most highly-paid construction occupation for which data are available from the survey was steamfitters and pipefitters. Since the survey was conducted in 2002, the average wage paid to steamfitters and pipefitters in Newfoundland and Labrador increased 37% to $25.34 per hour. Ironworkers, who were the highest-paid group in the province in 2002, saw their average wages decrease by 3.2% to $19.06 in 2006.

In Nova Scotia, steamfitters and pipefitters were the highest paid group in 2002 as well as 2006. Their average wage increased 14% over the four-year period to $26.61 per hour. In New Brunswick, refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics, who were the highest paid group in 2002, were paid 2.7% less on average in 2006, at $20.48. Steamfitters and pipefitters moved up from third to first place with a wage of $29.81 — an increase of 44% over the period.

Data are not available for steamfitters and pipefitters in Prince Edward Island. Among the occupations covered, plumbers were the highest paid in 2002 ($17.23 per hour) as well as 2006 ($20.30 per hour).

The lowest paid occupation in all four provinces, unchanged from 2002, was traffic accommodation person. In 2006, employees in this occupation were paid an average hourly wage ranging from $8.64 in Prince Edward Island to $10.36 in Nova Scotia.

The average increase in wages paid for all occupations surveyed in Newfoundland and Labrador was 14% over the four-year period. In Prince Edward Island, the overall average increase was 15.2%, in Nova Scotia it was 13.7% and in New Brunswick it was 14.6%.

The survey covered establishments in the construction industry with six or more employees. The establishments were asked to provide wage rates for employees working full-time in selected occupations and to indicate whether the workers were unionized. Data were collected for work on institutional or commercial construction sites only.

Note: This survey is conducted on behalf of the Labour Branch of Human Resources and Social Development Canada to help establish wage schedules for workers on federal construction projects. The survey is conducted region by region moving sequentially across the country. Quebec, Manitoba and Yukon, where wage rates are established by the provincial or territorial government, are excluded. The next round of the survey will be conducted in 2007 and will cover Saskatchewan and Alberta.

Definitions, data sources and methods: survey number 2935.

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact Client Services (toll-free 1-877-679-2746,, Small Business and Special Surveys Division.

For information or requests concerning the wage schedules developed from this survey data for workers on federal construction projects, contact Claude Saint-Jean (819-953-3183;, Human Resources and Social Development Canada.