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Wages in Alberta Part II: Lowest paid workers earnings remain unchanged

Wages in Alberta Part II: Lowest paid workers earnings remain unchanged

Posted on: 11/14/2017 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

Employees in Alberta’s food and accommodation sector are the lowest paid in the province, earning on average about $425 per week (adjusted for seasonality, including overtime pay but excluding taxes and deductions.) That’s a little more than a third (37 per cent) of the all-industry average of $1,134 per week.

There are reasons why the pay is so low in food and accommodations. Many jobs in this sector require little skill or training and are often entry-level positions for teenagers and young adults. As well, there is a high rate of part-time jobs in the sector; the average work week is about 23 hours (the all-industry average is 31.4 hours).

Despite the economic ups-and-downs that Alberta has endured over the last five years, average earnings by workers in food and accommodation have not budged. The graph below shows the all-industry average wage rising steadily through to the end of 2014, and easing slightly during the recession. In food and accommodation, however, total weekly earnings have remained virtually unchanged.

Alberta average weekly earnings, graph

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