P.E.I. wages rebound following dreadful 12 months

Wages were up 4.2 per cent on P.E.I. in the last three months of 2017, providing something of a recovery from a 12-month slide.

Average weekly wages on the Island were $848.10 in December

Home construction has been a major driver of the P.E.I. economy recently. (Steve Bruce/CBC)

Wages were up 4.2 per cent on P.E.I. in the last three months of 2017, providing something of a recovery from a 12-month slide.

Workforce Minister Sonny Gallant said growth in the Island's population is leading to economic strength.

"The government's population action plan is working," Gallant said.

The government reached its target of 150,000 population ahead of schedule at the end of 2016. Sonny Gallant says 'the government's population action plan is working.' (CBC )

"We're seeing key sectors booming, such as the construction industry. P.E.I.'s residential construction industry led the country."

The government reached its target of 150,000 population ahead of schedule at the end of 2016, and has set a new target of 160,000 by 2022.

It was the private sector that led the province's wage growth. Wages in public administration actually fell, down 0.4 per cent.

Wages in construction were up 10.1 per cent. Wages in retail, the Island's largest employment sector, were up 9.0 per cent.

A bad year

At $848.10, December's average weekly wages on the Island were the highest ever, but measured against the Canadian average wages peaked in September of 2016.

In that month they were 87 per cent of the national average, but then began a 12-month slide that saw wages bottom out at 83 per cent.

P.E.I. wages remain the lowest in the country.

The next lowest are in Nova Scotia at $863.48.

About the Author

Kevin Yarr

Kevin Yarr is the early morning web journalist at CBC P.E.I. You can reach him at kevin.yarr@cbc.ca.