The year-end figures on average weekly pay for wage earners shows Saskatchewan completed 2017 with a flourish.
This is one of several indicators that provide some insight into the state of affairs in the labour or employment market. We have the monthly Labour Force Survey which results in the unemployment rate metric. We have the vacancy rate which looks at the number of jobs available in the marketplace, and we have the monthly tally of wages.
When they are going up, it is a sign of strength or stability in the labour market as employers are upping the ante to attract talent.
For the past few years we have stood in third place among the provinces on this measure. Alberta and Newfoundland were ahead of us, with Ontario in fourth spot. The year-end numbers show that standing is unchanged but the gap between us and second spot Newfoundland is now just $4 a week. And we’re gaining on them.
Wages rose 2.7 per cent for the year in Saskatchewan. That was the second-highest increase in the country behind only Quebec.