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Thomas StorringDirector – Economics and Statistics
Tel: 902-424-2410Email:

October 26, 2023

Monthly (August 2023 vs July 2023, seasonally adjusted)

Nova Scotia had 450,326 payroll employees in August 2023, down 0.2% (-990) compared to July 2023. Canada had 18.02 million employees, down 0.3% from July 2023. There were declines in seven provinces, led by Quebec. The largest gain was in New Brunswick.

Nova Scotians' average weekly earnings were $1,075.06 in August of 2023, an increase of $5.75 (+0.5%) from revised July 2023 results.  

Nationally, average weekly earnings were $1,217.88, an increase of 0.3% (+$3.85) from average weekly earnings in July 2023. Eight provinces reported gains in average weekly earnings. Prince Edward Island reported the biggest gain while Saskatchewan and Alberta reported declines. 

Nova Scotia's average weekly earnings in August 2023 were second lowest among provinces (ahead of only Prince Edward Island). Alberta reported the highest average weekly earnings.

Nova Scotia's average weekly earnings were highest in company management, information and culture, professional and technical services, and finance and insurance industries. The lowest average weekly earnings were reported in Nova Scotia's accommodations and food service industries, arts, entertainment and recreation, and retail trade.

In August 2023, Nova Scotia's average weekly wages were 88.3% of the national average. Nova Scotia average weekly wages were below the comparable national average for every industry except company management. The smallest gaps were in information and culture and health/social assistance The largest gaps were in forestry/logging (73.6% of the national average) and public administration (84.0% of the national average).

Year-over-year (August 2023 vs August 2022)

Compared with the same month in 2022, Nova Scotia's payroll employment grew by 3.0% (+13,125) in August 2023. This was higher than the national average gain of 2.4%. All provinces reported growth in payroll employment, with the fastest gain in Prince Edward Island and Alberta while the slowest gain was in Quebec.

Among the industries reported by Statistics Canada, Nova Scotia's largest industries of employment were health care and social assistance (which includes daycares), followed by retail trade and education.

Forestry and logging as well as arts, entertainment and recreation and company management had the fastest year-over-year growth in payroll employment in Nova Scotia. Finance and insurance reported the largest percentage decline in payroll employment. 

Average weekly wages grew by 4.9% in Nova Scotia from August 2022 to August 2023. This was stronger than the national pace of 4.2%.

Average weekly wages grew by 4.2% across Canada from August 2022 to August 2023. There were gains in each province, with the fastest rise in Prince Edward Island. Saskatchewan and Alberta reported the slowest gain.

Average weekly wages were up 6.7% in Nova Scotia's goods-producing industries and 4.3% in Nova Scotia's services-producing industries. Most of the industries reported year-over-year growth in average weekly wages with the largest increases in information and culture as well as company management and wholesale trade industries. Average weekly wages were down in real estate and rental and leasing and retail trade industries.

Year-to-date (January-August 2023 vs January-August 2022)

In January-August 2023, Nova Scotia's payroll employment increased 2.9% over January-August 2022. Across Canada, payroll employment growth was 3.1% with gains in all provinces. Alberta reported the fastest rise in payroll employment while Newfoundland and Labrador reported the slowest growth rate.

In January-August 2023, arts, entertainment and recreation, forestry and logging as well as construction and professional and technical services industries reported the fastest employment growth in percentage terms compared to the same period in 2022. Information and culture and finance and insurance reported the only percentage declines. 

In January-August 2023, Nova Scotia's average weekly earnings increased by 4.0% compared to the same period in 2022. National average weekly earnings were up 3.1% in the first eight months of the year with gains in all provinces. Prince Edward Island and Manitoba reported the fastest gains in average weekly earnings while Alberta and Saskatchewan reported the slowest rises.

In January-August 2023, company management, manufacturing, and accommodation and food services reported the fastest percentage gains in average weekly earnings compared to the same period in 2022. Public administration and real estate, rental and leasing reported the only percentage declines. 

In January-August 2023, Nova Scotia's average weekly earnings were highest in company management as well as in professional and technical services industries. Nova Scotians' average weekly earnings averaged 88.3% of the national value for all industries in January-August 2023. All Nova Scotia industries reported average weekly earnings below their national counterparts. The gaps were narrowest in company management as well as health and social assistance and retail trade. Public administration and real estate, rental and leasing workers in Nova Scotia reported the largest gaps in average weekly earnings compared with the national average for the industry. 

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 14-10-0222-01 Employment, average hourly and weekly earnings (including overtime), and average weekly hours for the industrial aggregate excluding unclassified businesses, monthly, seasonally adjustedTable 14-10-0223-01 Employment and average weekly earnings (including overtime) for all employees by province and territory, monthly, seasonally adjusted

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