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Incomes in Alberta, part 2

Incomes in Alberta, part 2

Posted on: 7/15/2019 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

Friday’s Owl compared the median after-tax family income of Alberta’s main urban areas. Today’s edition looks at income by source and family type.

Several factors affect how much income a family has at its disposal, including the number of potential income recipients. Even though not all couples have dual incomes to combine, many do. As a result, the median after-tax income of couples in Alberta was $92,980 in 2017 compared to $62,950 for all family types.

Children add an income stream in the form of federal child benefits that helps push the median income of lone-parent families to $46,330. For the opposite reason, the median income for individuals without children was $32,490.

Median income is a statistical abstraction that helps us compare different groups. Half of the people in each group earn less than the median and half earn more.

Turning to the sources of income in Alberta, the main one is employment, at 74.9 per cent of the total income pie in 2017. Government transfers are the next largest source, at 9.9 per cent. The main government transfers are Canada Pension Plan benefits (27.6 per cent of all government transfer income), Old Age Security benefits (22.8 per cent), federal child benefits (15.9 per cent), and Employment Insurance benefits (13.8 per cent).

Dividend and interest income accounted for 8.0 per cent of total income in Alberta in 2017, with pension income (4.5 per cent), other income (2.4 per cent) and RRSP income (0.3 per cent) completing the income pie.

Not surprisingly, Old Age Security and Canada Pension Plan payments are a larger source of income for Albertans age 65 and over at 31.0 per cent of the total income of seniors in 2017. Pensions accounted for 24.5 per cent of the total income of seniors, employment for 20.3 per cent, dividends and interest for 14.9 per cent, and RRSP income for 2.2 per cent.

Family income by source 2019, graph​​

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