Average weekly earnings and payroll employment in Manitoba both took a hit in the first month of 2014, new Statistics Canada data shows.
The agency said weekly earnings declined by 1.6 per cent, or $14.16, to $853.01 from $867.17 in December.
The good news was that, despite the month-over-month decline, January’s earnings were still 3.3 per cent higher than in January 2013, when they were at $825.78.
The number of payroll employees, meanwhile, dipped by 0.5 per cent, or 3,100 workers, to 579,200 from 582,300 in December.
But as was the case with earnings, January’s employee total was still higher than a year earlier — 0.7 per cent higher, to be exact — when there were 575,300 payroll employees in the province.
Payroll employees are non-farm workers who work for someone, as opposed to being self employed.
Manitoba’s monthly drop in earnings was the second biggest provincial decline after Prince Edward Island’s 1.7 per cent. And the monthly dip in the number of payroll employees was the largest.
Nationally, average weekly earnings were virtually unchanged from December to January, at $924.77, but up three per cent from a year earlier.
And the number of payroll employees was also virtually unchanged at 15.5 million, and up one per cent from the previous January.