Payroll employment, earnings and hours, November 2016
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Average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees were $961 in November, up 0.8% from both the previous month and November 2015.
In general, changes in weekly earnings reflect a number of factors, including wage growth; changes in the composition of employment by industry, occupation and level of job experience; and average hours worked per week.
In November, non-farm payroll employees worked an average of 32.8 hours per week, up from 32.6 hours the previous month, but down from 33.0 hours 12 months earlier.
Average weekly earnings by sector
In the 12 months to November, average weekly earnings rose in 5 of the 10 largest industrial sectors, led by educational services, health care and social assistance as well as manufacturing. Over the same period, average weekly earnings decreased in administrative and support services and professional, scientific and technical services. There was little or no change among the remaining large sectors.
Average weekly earnings in educational services rose 2.1% to $1,033 in the 12 months to November. Increases were observed in several industries and were primarily driven by elementary and secondary schools, the largest industry in the sector.
Compared with 12 months earlier, average weekly earnings in health care and social assistance rose 1.9% to $881. The most notable increase was in general medical and surgical hospitals.
On a year-over-year basis, average weekly earnings in manufacturing were up 1.3% to $1,099. Earnings growth was driven by machinery manufacturing and food manufacturing.
In the 12 months to November, average weekly earnings declined 2.6% to $763 in administrative and support services. The most notable decline was in employment services, the largest industry in the sector. This industry includes agencies referring and placing applicants in employment. Earnings in the sector have been on a downward trend since early 2016.
Compared with November 2015, average weekly earnings in professional, scientific and technical services decreased 1.5% to $1,318. The largest declines were in specialized design services as well as accounting, tax preparation, bookkeeping and payroll services.
Two of the smaller industrial sectors affected the overall earnings growth rate. In finance and insurance, average weekly earnings rose 5.2% to $1,278. The increase in this high-earning sector contributed the most to total wage growth. On the other hand, while earnings in accommodation and food services were little changed at $374, a large employment increase in this low-earning sector moderated the overall year-over-year growth rate.
Average weekly earnings by province
In the 12 months to November, average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees increased in eight provinces. Earnings grew most rapidly in Prince Edward Island, followed by Quebec, New Brunswick and Manitoba. Alberta was the lone province with earnings declines. At the same time, average earnings in Saskatchewan were virtually unchanged.
Average weekly earnings in Prince Edward Island rose 2.3% to $824 in the 12 months to November. Earnings growth was most notable in finance and insurance and health care and social assistance.
On a year-over-year basis, average weekly earnings in Quebec grew 2.1% to $879. Earnings growth was spread across several sectors, driven by educational services and manufacturing. The increase in educational services was partly due to the fact that earnings in this sector were at a relatively low point in November 2015.
Compared with 12 months earlier, average weekly earnings in New Brunswick rose 1.8% to $879. The most notable increases were in health care and social assistance, manufacturing as well as finance and insurance.
In Manitoba, average weekly earnings were up 1.6% to $898 compared with November 2015. Increases in earnings were spread across several sectors, with construction as well as finance and insurance contributing the most to the gains.
In the 12 months to November, average weekly earnings in British Columbia rose 1.5% to $924. Finance and insurance and professional, scientific and technical services were the largest contributors to the growth.
Average weekly earnings in Ontario grew 1.0% to $978 compared with November 2015. Earnings growth in the province was spread across several sectors, driven by increases in information and cultural industries as well as finance and insurance.
On the other hand, average weekly earnings in Alberta were down 1.6% to $1,114 from 12 months earlier. Professional, scientific and technical services contributed the most to the decline over this period. Earnings in the province have been on a downward trend since the start of 2015.
Non-farm payroll employment by sector
The number of non-farm payroll jobs was up by 25,300 (+0.2%) in November. Payroll employment increased the most in retail trade, construction, health care and social assistance as well as information and cultural industries. At the same time, there were fewer payroll employees in real estate and rental and leasing and wholesale trade.
Compared with November 2015, the number of non-farm payroll employees increased by 182,200 or 1.2%. The largest increases were in health care and social assistance (+64,000 or +3.5%), accommodation and food services (+31,300 or +2.5%) and public administration (+25,300 or +2.4%).
Over the same period, there were fewer payroll jobs in mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction (-14,500 or -7.2%), wholesale trade (-10,600 or -1.4%), manufacturing (-9,900 or -0.7%) and "other services" (-9,500 or -1.7%).
Recent labour market developments
The pace of employment growth has been similar in both of Statistics Canada's monthly surveys with data on employment: the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (SEPH) and the Labour Force Survey (LFS). Compared with November 2015, SEPH showed an increase of 1.2%, while the LFS showed an increase of 1.3% among employees. The two surveys showed similar trends at the provincial level in 2016, with increases in employment growth in British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec and a decline in Alberta.
At the provincial level, indicators from both surveys show that British Columbia had the strongest employment growth in the 12 months to November. SEPH showed an increase of 2.7%, while LFS showed an increase of 2.4% in employees. SEPH also shows that earnings growth in that province has outpaced the national average since the summer. In addition, since the summer, LFS shows that British Columbia had the lowest unemployment rate among the provinces.
Note to readers
With the March 31 release of January 2017 data, the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (SEPH) will be releasing historically revised estimates. These estimates will include seasonally adjusted data that have been revised based on the latest seasonal factors. Historical revisions will also be made to a number of industries by province and territory.
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.
Unless otherwise specified, 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.
Real-time CANSIM tables
Data on payroll employment, earnings and hours for December 2016 will be released on February 23, 2017.
A summary table is also available.
Job Vacancy Statistics (5202) from the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours for October 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 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 Andrew Fields (613-951-3551; firstname.lastname@example.org), Labour Statistics Division.