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Study: The impact of annual wages on interprovincial mobility, interprovincial employment and job vacancies, 2001 to 2008

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Released: 2016-04-11

The relatively stronger wage growth observed in Alberta during the 2000s led a significant number of young men to move to that province, thereby filling some of the job vacancies observed during that period.

A new study found that from 2001 to 2006, average real annual wages and salaries earned by unmarried men aged 17 to 34 grew faster in Alberta than in other provinces. For example, wage growth for young men living in Alberta exceeded that of their counterparts in Ontario by about 15 percentage points, while the difference was about 10 percentage points for young men in Prince Edward Island.

The stronger wage growth observed in Alberta led many young men to migrate to that province. In Ontario, the percentage of young men moving to Alberta the following year almost tripled, rising from 0.23% in 2001 to 0.68% in 2006. In Prince Edward Island, the percentage increased from 1.21% in 2001 to 2.08% in 2006.

After controlling for provincial differences in unemployment rates, rates of involuntary part-time employment and housing costs, the study estimated that a 5% increase in real average annual wages in Alberta relative to those in other provinces increased the probability of young unmarried men moving to Alberta by roughly 0.35 percentage points from a baseline rate of 0.64%.

The estimated increase in the migration of young men induced by changes in the provincial earnings structure represented 12% to 24% of the job vacancies observed in Alberta during this period.


The research paper "The Impact of Annual Wages on Interprovincial Mobility, Interprovincial Employment, and Job Vacancies," part of the Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series (Catalogue number11F0019M), is now available from the Browse by key resource module of our website, under Publications.

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To enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact René Morissette at (613-951-3608;, Social Analysis and Modelling Division.

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