Many Canadian employers expect workers’ salaries to rise well ahead of inflation next year, but some sectors will only be able to offer modest pay rises.
On average, salary increases of 2.3 percent are expected in 2018, ahead of the current inflation rate of about one percent, according to Morneau Shepell
's annual survey of Trends in Human Resources.
That’s up from an actual average increase of 2.2 percent in 2017.
Increases above the anticipated average were expected in utilities (2.9 percent), manufacturing and wholesale trade (2.7 percent) and finance and insurance (2.7 percent).
However, industries like mining, oil and gas – facing unsteady economic conditions – expected increases well below the average, of about 0.8 percent.
Public sector salaries were also expected to be below average. Education service workers were expected to see 1.9 percent increases, with 1.7 percent increases for public administration, health care and social assistance employees.
"Employers are relatively optimistic about the coming year," says Morneau Shepell
compensation consulting principal Michel Dubé.
"Those expecting better financial performance in the coming year outnumber those expecting weaker performance by four to one. Despite this optimism, employers are still cautious about salary increases, perhaps reflecting a concern that rising interest rates may dampen economic growth next year."
Quebec was expected to have the highest salary increases, at 2.6 percent, with Alberta and Prince Edward Island the lowest at 1.8 and 1.9 percent respectively.
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