Average Income in Canada: Does Your Salary Measure Up?

Posted on September 17, 2021

If you are moving to Canada, then the most important factor that you are thinking about is income. You want to make sure that the new opportunity you are considering has a promising salary. In fact, you want to make enough to spoil yourself in Canada.

Luckily, we have all the info and statistics about the average income in Canada. It's not as crazy as you think, or maybe it is, but it's worth the read.

Average Household Income for 2021

The average weekly wage in Canada is $1,050.59. This equates to an annual average income of a little over $54,630 for full-time workers. Salary growth continues to be on the rise, with most Canadian employees earning more than they did a year ago.

The average salary in Canada has increased by 4% since January 2019. This really indicates an acceleration of growth since Canadian wages previously grew at an average annual pace of 2.7 percent.

Median Household Income - Canadian Cities

Here are the 2021 average salary by location:

  • Alberta – $61,865 (an increase of 3.8% )
  • British Columbia – $53,416 (an increase of 5.6% )
  • Manitoba – $49,661 (an increase of 0.1 percent)
  • Newfoundland and Labrador – $55,508 (+2.3)
  • Nova Scotia – $48,470 (an increase of 4.3 percent)
  • New Brunswick – $49,511 (+2.9 percent)
  • Northwest Territories – $77,670 (+5.4 percent )
  • Nunavut - $87,355 (an increase of 20.1 percent)
  • Ontario – $55,524 (up 3.8% )
  • Prince Edward Island – $45,912 (+3.6 percent )
  • Quebec – $51,735 (+4.8%)
  • Saskatchewan – $54,371 (an increase of 1.9 percent)
  • Yukon – $61,812 (an increase of 5.0 percent)

While the average Canadian income has increased, this does not imply that workers receive the same pay in each province and territory. The average wage remains high in historically prosperous regions like:

  • Alberta
  • British Columbia
  • Ontario
  • Quebec

Based on the data, we can see that the fastest Salary growth rates vary by province and territory in Canada.

Fastest Growing Industries in Canada

For prospective job seekers planning their careers, researching which sectors have had the most growth over the last 12 months may be very beneficial.

While the average Canadian income rose by 4% from 2019 to 2021, this growth rate is not uniform across all industries and economic sectors. Indeed, these sectors mentioned below have had average pay increases of more than 8%, which is more than twice the national average:

  • +26.3% - Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation
  • +14.6% - Real Estate (Rental/Leasing)
  • +9.4% - Administrative and Support 
  • +9.3% - Public Administration
  • +9.3% - Finance and Insurance
  • +9.1% - Health Care and Social Assistance 
  • +8.4% - Retail 

The Finance and Insurance industry remained robust. However, the Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation sector saw phenomenal pay growth, with a staggering 26.3 percent rise.

Despite the hype surrounding the Canadian home market, the real estate industry has recovered significantly from its negative growth position at the start of 2019. This industry currently has the second greatest average pay rise in 2021, rising by 14.6 percent on average.

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Industries with A Falling Average Yearly Income in Canada

While the average Canadian income and pay have increased nationally since 2019, this does not imply that growth occurred in every industry and area. In fact, these Canadian sectors had an average pay drop in 2021: 

  • +0.0% - Management of Companies and Enterprises
  • 8.9% - Forestry and timber harvesting

Technically, the average pay in the Management of Companies and Enterprises sector has stayed constant, rather than declining. When the yearly average cost of living increases, it negatively impacts those working in these industries. 

Canada's Lowest-Paying Job Sectors

Here are Canada' lowest-paying job since 2021:

  • $40,241.76 (+26.3) - Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation
  • $34,503.04 (+8.0) - Retail 

While the Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation sector had the highest pay rise of 26.3 percent, the average annual salary increased only to $40,241.76. Nonetheless, the high rate of pay growth shows that these sectors are on the rise and continue to provide excellent possibilities for job searchers and new hires.

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Canada's General Income Statistics

The most common misconception that people have about income is that it's only one number that explains it all. However, income statistics involves multiple numbers and interpretations. Here are some income statistics that gives us insight on the Canadian economy:

Percentage of Those Earning A 6 Figure Income

In 2019, 15.7 percent of Canadians earned $100,000 or more per year. In Canada, the average salary varies significantly according to: 

  • Educational level
  • Industry
  • Talents 

Around 17.6 percent of Canadians earn between $60,000 and $79,000 each year. Approximately 2.1 percent of the population earns less than $5,000 per year. 

How Much Do Workers Make

Workers earned an average of $1,050.59 per week if wages were calculated weekly. This demonstrated a good trend, highlighting a 4% increase in profits from January 2019. The rise in growth rate was too optimistic, given the initial average yearly income growth rate of approximately 2.7 percent.

Debt

Canadians owe $1.7 in credit market debt for every dollar of disposable family income. This indicates that Canadians borrow less than they earn in 2021. This implies that family income growth has surpassed debt growth.

As of 2019, the median income for Canadian families and single people was $62,900 after taxes.

Poverty

The decrease of 10.1 percent in Canada's poverty rate indicates that a significant number of households experienced an advancement in income. This implies that the median income in Canada remained almost constant from 2018. The highest-earning families were those under 65, with a median income of $93,800 after taxes.

Couples with children, on the other hand, had a median income of $105,500. The median income of households with a head of household aged 65 or older was about $64,300.

Taxes

Paying taxes is a major cost for every Canadian household. According to a Fraser Institute research, the typical Canadian family pays $39,000 in taxes on a $91,535 yearly income.

This indicates that up to 42.6 percent of their profits are taxed. Beyond income and payroll deductions, Canadians pay other taxes, including:

  • Property taxes
  • Sales taxes
  • Import taxes
  • Alcohol taxes 

This shows that taxes are high and takes away most of the Canadian income.

Income Distribution in Canada by Age

Nearly 2 million seniors subsist on less than $17,000 each year. Seniors in Canada have not been immune to difficulties. Indeed, almost 15% of single seniors live in poverty.

Around two million seniors struggle to make ends meet on the government-provided Guaranteed Income Supplement. Their yearly income is slightly around $17,000, less than the $18,000 poverty threshold for a single person in Canada.

Earning in the Forties and Fifties

Canadians aged 45 to 54 earn about $66,968 per year. When we examine the average pay by age in Canada, we find that individuals reach their peak earning between the ages of 45 and 54. They now earn an average of $66,968, which is much more than younger Canadians in the 25–34 age bracket earn (about $45,953) .

Millennial Earning

Millennials have a median household income of $44,093 after taxes. Recent Canadian income data indicate that today's younger generations are wealthier than prior generations.

Between the ages of 25 and 35, Millennials make $44,093, which is higher than that of Gen-Xers ($33,276) and Baby Boomers ($33,350) at the same age.

Statistics on Income Inequality in Canada

Income disparity has reduced by almost 30% in Canada as a result of the tax system. While inequality persists in Canada, the Great White North has made significant strides in closing the separation. Additionally, Canada's progressive tax structure has resulted in a substantial improvement in the country's income distribution.

The bottom 40% earn about 13% of the total nation's wealth before taxes, which increased to 21% after taxes. On the other hand, although the top 20% earn an average of $131,000, they earn about $26,000 less after taxes. This arrangement has contributed significantly to the reduction of income inequality in Canada.

How the Pandemic Affected these Statistics?

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck, workers were laid off, while others were forced to depend on the financial assistance of about $500 per week. Meanwhile, CEOs benefited from a bull market, anticipating a rise in pay in 2020.

Gender Earning

Men earned 76.8 cents for every dollar earned by women in 2019. Unfortunately, as the latest Canadian income data demonstrate, the gender wage gap is as pronounced as ever.

According to the Ontario government, women with comparable experience, socioeconomic status, and demographic characteristics earn about $7,200 less per year than their male counterparts. Thus, women must labour 15 and a half months to obtain the same 12-month salary as males.

Indigenous versus Non-indigenous

Indigenous Canadians earn about 70 cents for every dollar made by non-Indigenous Canadians, according to Canada's income data.

This is a very frequent occurrence in metropolitan areas, where non-Indigenous employees earn 34% more than indigenous workers doing the same job. The situation is much worse in remote reservations, where non-Indigenous individuals earn up to 88 percent more than Indigenous people.

On a more optimistic note, Indigenous individuals with college degrees are closing the gap. Between 1996 and 2006, the wage disparity between individuals with and without a bachelor's degree decreased from $3,382 to $648.

The Top Earners

In 2018, Canada's top 1% earners had an average yearly income of $496,200. The richest Canadians make almost half a million dollars per year, according to 2018 statistics on the top 1% income in Canada. Even more astonishing, the richest 0.1 percent earn an average of $1,669,400.

However, we must keep in mind that the average income of the country's richest individuals varies by region. Nonetheless, this is another subject of concern when examining Canada's wealth distribution and how it operates in practice.

Does Your Salary Measure Up?

Whether you are above or below the average income in Canada, it is still important to be aware of these data and statistics. Being aware of current trends enables us to better grasp the pay and salary growth of various demographic groups throughout the nation. The income statistics for Canada may assist us in answering some of the most critical issues regarding the Canadian economy. 

You may even want to find strategies to reduce costs on your insurance and payments. If this is the case, contact us to learn more.

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