Understanding the Average Annual Salary in Canada

Updated March 9, 2023

When searching for a new job, understanding the average salary can provide insight into the expectations of the job market. Knowing basic information about the average wage in Canada and the averages of various industries can help you narrow your search and approach the best companies that fit your needs and expectations. In this article, we discuss the average salary in Canada and provide provincial and territory statistics and industry averages.

What is the average salary in Canada?

Statistics Canada reports that the average salary across the entire country in 2020 was $1,136 per week. The assumption that the average person worked 52 weeks in the year equates to an annual average salary of $59,059 per year. The reported annual average wage in Canada marked an increase of 5.4% over the previous year. Statistics Canada asked respondents to provide their wages before taxes or deductions and to include tips, commissions, and bonuses.

Many factors affect the earning potential of someone in the country, including their profession, how many hours they work, and the location or city they work in. Other factors include whether a union or collective agreement dictates an employee's wages, as union and collective agreement members earn more than unprotected employees. In addition, the cost of living varies widely across the country. As a result, it affects the average annual salary, as employers must pay their employees higher wages to accommodate for higher living expenses. Finally, education and experience also affect earning potential for individuals throughout their professional life.

Related: 14 High-Paying Blue-Collar Jobs

What is the average salary by province and territory?

Breaking down the average annual income by province and territory summarizes cost-of-living differences and other factors associated with the location. For example, certain cities and provinces are more desirable or have robust economies in specific industries, such as agriculture, petroleum, or manufacturing, affecting earning potential.

For the most current salary for specific job titles, you can visit Indeed Salaries. The provincial and territorial income averages below come from Statistics Canada:

Province or Territory

2019 Average Annual Income

2020 Average Annual Income




British Columbia






New Brunswick



Newfoundland and Labrador



Northwest Territories


No data available

Nova Scotia





No data available




Prince Edward Island











No data available

Provinces and territories with the most significant salary growth

According to further research completed by Statistics Canada, there was salary growth across most of the country from June 2019 to June 2020. No province or territory saw a decline in development over this year. The minimum growth percentage was in Alberta at 3.5%, and the highest growth topping out at 13.8% in Prince Edward Island.

Below shows the province and territory rate of salary change from June 2019 to June 2020, based on information from Statistics Canada:

Province or Territory

% of change from June 2019 to

Prince Edward Island


British Columbia






Nova Scotia




New Brunswick




Northwest Territories






Newfoundland and Labrador




Prince Edward Island had the most significant change, with an increase of 13.8% in salary rates from June 2019 to June 2020. British Columbia and Ontario also saw a healthy increase in wages over the same period. Employees saw the smallest increase in wages in Nunavut, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Alberta.

Average salaries based on industry sector

According to Statistics Canada, there was also considerable growth across most industry sectors within the country. The most significant increase in average salaries was within the arts, entertainment, and recreation industries, increasing from June 2019 to June 2020 by 26.3%. Conversely, only one sector saw a decline in average salaries with a decrease of -8.9% in the forestry and logging industry. Below is a detailed table showing the various industries reported to Statistics Canada, the average annual salary in June 2020 and the percentage of growth from the same time in 2019:

Industry sector

Average annual salary

% of change in average annual salary

Accommodation and food services



Administrative, waste management, and remediation services



Arts, entertainment, and recreation






Educational services



Finance and insurance



Forestry and logging



Health care and social assistance



Information and cultural industries









Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction



Other services



Professional, scientific, and technical services



Public administration



Real estate, rental, and leasing



Retail trade



Transportation and warehousing






Wholesale trade



Several industries had average annual salaries over the country's average of $59,020. These industries include:

  • Construction

  • Finance and insurance

  • Information and cultural industries

  • Management

  • Manufacturing

  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction

  • Professional, scientific, and technical services

  • Public administration

  • Transportation and warehousing

  • Utilities

  • Wholesale trade

Industries with the highest average annual salaries

Five top industries in Canada offer the highest average annual salaries, according to Statistics Canada. They include:

  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction: $113,506

  • Utilities: $101,531

  • Finance and insurance: $76,843

  • Professional, scientific, and technical services: $76,078

  • Public administration: $75,800

Many job positions within these top five industries require advanced academic training, highly developed skill sets, and years of experience. In addition, it's important to note that many positions within the top-paying industry of mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction require long periods away from home in remote camps and communities.

Related: How To Improve Your Skill Set and Keep Skills Current

Industries with the highest average annual salary growth

Several industries experienced a significant increase in the annual average wage from June 2019 to June 2020, based on Statistics Canada. They include:

  • Arts, entertainment, and recreation: 26.3%

  • Real estate, rental, and leasing: 14.6%

  • Other services: 10.6%

  • Administrative, waste management, and remediation services: 9.4%

  • Public administration: 9.3%

  • Finance and insurance: 9.1%

Public administration, finance, and insurance industries saw both the highest average annual salaries across the country and the fifth and sixth top highest growth percentage over a year. Public administration includes local, provincial, and federal government, law enforcement, and public service administration. The finance and insurance industry includes banking, investments, insurance advisors, and mortgage brokers.

Related: How To Negotiate Salary (With Examples)

How to find the average salary for a job

While the average salary for a job will vary based on location, company, experience, and education, you can find online information to help you in your job search. By reviewing this information, you can learn what to expect for various positions and tailor your job search for specific position titles, experience levels, or locations. You can also use average salary information as a bargaining tool to increase your earning potential with interested employers. Here is a step-by-step process to finding average salary information:

1. Find the exact title

To find the correct average salary information online, research various job titles to ensure you are searching for accurate information. First, you will need to know the exact title of the job you want to find the information you're seeking. Then, review various job positions and job descriptions to see the job title that matches best to the duties and responsibilities you want to perform.

2. Review the Indeed Salaries page

Once you have identified the exact job title, use the Indeed Salaries page to search for a position's average salary based on the entire country or a specific city. You can filter your results to show hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, or annual salary information for each exact job title you search. This page also provides information on top companies hiring for the position you searched for along with their average wage. You can also see the highest paying cities near you and how much other similar professions earn.

3. Compare salaries

It may be helpful to compare several average salaries of similar positions, nearby locations, and top companies in the area. Comparing salaries can provide you with insight into roles to pursue or research further. It can also provide valuable information into the training or experience needed to increase your earning potential within your career.

4. Review the requirements for each position

Once you have completed your salary search and compared average wages for specific companies, locations, and job titles, you're ready to select the positions you're most interested in. But before you apply for positions, ensure that you review the requirements for each job. While you now understand the average salary for the job title you're interested in, there may be factors to address in your cover letter and resume.

For example, you can tailor each cover letter and resume to address the specific requirements, skills, and experience the company is seeking within their job description. Making sure that you customize each application will enhance the chances of a hiring manager or recruiter reviewing your resume.

Please note that none of the companies mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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